High Rock Lake is a 15,250-acre reservoir with 366 miles of shoreline on the Yadkin River on the Eastern side of Rowan county. The lake divides Rowan and Davidson County in North Carolina, and serves as a reservoir for hydroelectric power generation. High Rock Lake is the second largest lake in North Carolina behind Lake Norman, and the farthest northern lake of the Uwharrie Lake chain. The lake is named after the tallest Uwharrie mountain, High Rock Mountain.
High Rock Lake is the northernmost of the Uwharrie Lakes and the second largest lake in North Carolina behind Lake Norman. Its water surface covers 15,180 acres (61 km2) and there are 365 miles (587 km) of shoreline. It begins at the confluence of the Yadkin River and the South Yadkin River. The lake's name is derived from neighboring "High Rock Mountain", the tallest mountain in the Uwharrie Mountains. The lake serves as a boundary between Davidson and Rowan counties and is a reservoir for hydroelectric power generation. High Rock Lake is currently managed and operated by the Alcoa company.
The lake is spanned by two bridges at the northern end of the lake: the I-85/US 52 bridge and the older US 29/US 70/NC 150 bridge. The NC 8 causeway crosses the Abbotts Creek tributary of the lake, as does a bridge at Holloway Church Road farther north of Abbotts Creek. Railroad tracks and their causeways also cross the southeastern portion of the lake at the Hwy 8 causeway and over Flat Swamp Creek. Numerous communities align the lake's banks including Lexington, Salisbury, Southmont, Linwood, High Rock, and Spencer.
Several communities align the lake's banks including Salisbury, Lexington, Spencer, Southmont, Linwood and High Rock. Single family waterfront homes on High Rock Lake range from starter homes to high end. Fishing and boating are popular activities for residents, and High Rock Lake has hosted many bass fishing tournaments. High Rock’s lake water can fluctuate dramatically with periods of drought, however, which has resulted in a recent mandate that all private docks must be floating. Fully enclosed boathouses are no longer allowed to be built on the lake, but many older existing structures have been grandfathered in. Open-air boathouses and docks are permitted to be built on some lots.