Cardens Bluff Campground has closed for the 2021 season. At nearly 2,000 feet elevation, Cardens Bluff Campground is located on a peninsula overlooking the 6,430-acre Watauga Lake in Carter County, TN. There are 43 sites, primarily for tent camping. There is a bathhouse with showers and flush toilets. No electrical hookups are provided. Day use areas are located nearby for those wanting to take advantage of swimming, boating, and fishing opportunities. Campground Hosts are on site to answer questions and assist with your visit.
There are 43 campsites within Cardens Bluff Campground. Each section of the campground has flush toilets. In addition, there is an accessible shower house with eight showers for use by registed campers only.
Cardens Bluff Campground has closed for the 2021 season.
The gate is closed at 10:00 p.m. and reopens at 7:00 a.m. The gate is only opened at night for emergencies.
An RV counts as one of the two vehicles allowed at a site. All equipment must fit on the site pad. Vehicles park in developed areas only.
This faclity does not allow alcohol.
Be Bear Wise: Never leave food out on tables or in the open. Store unattended food in bear-resistant containers, in a vehicle in solid non-pliable material, or suspend food at least 12 feet off the ground. Remember to use the bear resistant trash receptacles provided at this facility. Please adhere to the Cherokee National Forest Food and Refuse Storage Requirements 36 CFR 261.58 (cc). Visit the Cherokee National Forest website for more information.
Check-out time is no later than 11 am EST on your departure day. You may check-in to the campground between 2 pm EST and 10 pm EST of your arrival date. If you have not checked-in before 2 pm EST the day after your arrival date, your site will be checked-out and will forfeit all fees.
All pets must be on a 6' leash at all times. Owners must pick up after their pets, and all pet waste disposed of properly.
There is no electricity/water/sewer site hook-ups at this facility. There is potable water and a dump station within the campground.
Watauga Lake is a 6,430-acre hydroelectric reservoir managed by the Tennessee Valley Authority and surrounded by the Cherokee National Forest. Directly across the lake from the campground is the Big Laurel Branch Wilderness area, a rugged, undeveloped mountain range with only the Appalachian National Scenic Trail within its boundaries.
The nearby Rat Branch Boat Launch is an easy quick drive from the campground for campers with motor boats. Shook Branch Swim Area is also nearby on the shores of Watauga Lake. Big Laurel Branch and Pond Mountain Wilderness areas are located north and south of the campground for more rugged, backcountry hiking.
Boating is popular for visitors to Cardens Bluff. Numerous campsites provide easy water access for kayaks, canoes and motorized boats. Swimming and fishing are also very popular activities at Cardens Bluff. Watauga Lake provides notably clean water for recreating.
4400 Unicoi Drive Unicoi Tennessee 37692
For campground inquiries, please call: 423-735-1500
From Elizabethton, TN take US 19E/321 south 5 miles to Hampton. Turn left on 321/67 travel approx. 4 miles to the campground entrance on the left.