HARRISON COUNTY LAKES
Harrison County is home to three of the ten lakes operated by the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District ("MWCD"). MWCD is the largest conservancy district in the state of Ohio, serving 18 counties and more than 20 percent of the surface area of the state. The lakes operated by MWCD are the impoundments contained behind dams built for flood control purposes in the 1930s and currently operated by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Tappan Lake, Clendening Lake, and a portion of Piedmont Lake are located in Harrison County. Collectively these lakes provide more than 4,200 acres of public recreational water in the county.
Tappan Lake is located along U. S. Route 250 northwest of Cadiz, the county seat. Tappan Lake is a popular destination for boating, fishing, swimming, and camping. MWCD operates Tappan Lake Park, which offers 600 campsites, rental cabins, a public beach, a boat launch ramp, docking facilities, 8 miles of hiking trails, and picnic areas. The lake has a full service marina, two public boat launch ramps outside the park, dock rental, boat rental, a roadside rest area, and restaurants. A 299 horsepower limit is enforced on Tappan Lake.
Clendening Lake is located just off U. S. Route 22 west of Cadiz. Clendening Lake has minimal shoreline development, and is the largest lake in Ohio to be designated as a "primitive lake." Excellent fishing opportunities are available, and the lake holds the Ohio record for flathead catfish. The shoreline is pristine and is occupied only by a few summer youth camps operated by the Boy Scouts, YMCA, and 4-H. The lake offers boat launch ramps, a full service marina, camping, and rental units for lodging. A 10 horsepower limit is enforced on Clendening Lake.
Piedmont Lake is in southwestern Harrison County, at the village of Piedmont, and is partially located in two adjacent counties as well. Piedmont Lake holds the Ohio state record for muskellunge and offers excellent angling opportunities for many species. The lake has a full service marina, boat launch ramps, food service, camping, and lodging. A 10 horsepower limit is enforced on Piedmont Lake.
MWCD offers most of its 15,000 acres of land in Harrison County for public hunting purposes. Small game thrives on these undeveloped lands, and white tail deer and wild turkey are available in abundant numbers. Each year more than 2,700 deer are harvested, and more than 500 turkeys are taken annually.
More information on MWCD and its facilities is available at the MWCD website at www.mwcdlakes.com.