• River: Sabine River
• Length: 1,264 Miles
• Surface Area: 185,000 Acres
• Volume: 4,477,000 Acre Feet
• Average Depth: 60 Feet
• Maximum Depth: 110 feet
Toledo Bend Reservoir is a reservoir on the Sabine River between Texas and Louisiana. the largest man-made body of water in Texas, the largest in the South, and the fifth largest in the United States.
The land along the Orange area often flooded from the Sabine, with destructive effects. Also, the considerations for municipal, industrial, agricultural, and recreational purposes were part of the reasons the Texas State Legislature formed the Sabine River Authority of Texas in 1949, and in 1950 the Louisiana State Legislature created the Sabine River Authority, State of Louisiana for the project.
With both authorities in agreement, in 1955 a feasibility report was initiated and by 1959, the two states allocated 30 million dollars for the project. The land was acquired in 1963, with the work following the subsequent year.
Beginning in May 1963, land acquisitions for Toledo Bend Reservoir started as a joint management project of Texas and
Louisiana River Authorities. Construction on the Toledo Bend Dam, spillway, and power plant, began on May 11, 1964. The closure section of the earthen embankment and impoundment of water was begun in October 1966. The power plant was completed and began operating in the early part of 1969. The Toledo Bend Project was constructed primarily for the purposes of water supply, hydroelectric power generation, and recreation.
Toledo Bend Reservoir forms a portion of the boundary between the states of Texas and Louisiana. From the dam site, which is north of Burkeville, TX, the reservoir extends up the river for about 65 miles to Logansport, LA, and inundates land in Sabine, Shelby, Panola and Newton Counties, Texas, and Sabine and DeSoto Parishes, Louisiana.
Toledo Bend is the nation's only public water conservation and hydroelectric power project to be undertaken without federal participation in its permanent financing.
Both private and public facilities are available for swimming, boating, picnicking, fishing, camping, hunting and sightseeing. The reservoir is a popular location for freshwater fishing with many clubs hosting tournaments.
At present, the lake is best suited to shallow draft power boats due to a large number of trees and stumps that are still in the body of the lake.