Exploring the Winding Shores and Skies of Central Georgia’s Lake Oconee
One of the many perks of being a commercial photographer is the opportunity to experience and explore some of the most beautiful parts of the world as you travel in the service of your clients. One such happy surprise was a recent trip to Lake Oconee, in central Georgia – a location that I didn’t even know existed just a few months ago. As providence would have it, we were treated to a stunning, gold-infused sunrise accented by wisps of fog still lingering from the cool pre-dawn twilight.
As has become the norm, my drones accompanied me on this trip, providing a birds-eye view of the sprawling nooks and crannies of Lake Oconee. Like many lakes that dot the American landscape like splintered bolt of lightning, Lake Oconee is a man-made body of water, created in 1979 as part of an expansive hydroelectric project.
Wallace Dam stops up the waters of Lake Oconee, raising the then-river’s elevation some 400 feet above its natural course. As part of a twin reservoir system, Wallace Dam is unique, in that it recycles the waters of the lake, with the level lowering and rising about two feet every night – and by some sort of engineering magic, the dam still produces some 300 megawatts of power. It’s a neat concept that I can’t quite wrap my mind around.
Lake Oconee is also home to The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee. The resort, nestled among towering pines and adorned like a Victorian-era grand hotel, offers the perfect mix of opulent luxury and lake house charm. As you would expect, the resort offers all manner of waterfront amenities, from jet skis and ski boats to kayaks, canoes and an intimate sandy beach. If you have the time and the resources, a visit to this resort would make the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
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