Tri-County Lakes Administrative Commission

Aids to Navigation

To assist mariners at Smith Mountain Lake, 153 lighted channel markers have been installed throughout the Lake. Additionally shoal and rock buoys have been installed in areas where specific “hazard to navigation” criteria has been met.

Bull Run — Little Bull Run
Channel Markers: 5

Craddock Creek
Channel Markers: 8

Roanoke River
Channel Markers: 77

Shoal Markers: 57
6 are lighted

Beaverdam Creek
Channel Markers: 5

Gills Creek
Channel Markers: 7

Witcher Creek
Channel Markers: 1

Rock Markers: 6

Blackwater River
Channel Markers: 48

Hatcher Creek
Channel Markers: 1

Walton’s Creek
Channel Markers: 1

HalesFord Bridge: 18 lights

Rock marker

Information Regarding Aids to Navigation on Smith Mountain Lake

The responsibility of the majority of the navigation markers on Smith Mountain Lake now belongs to American Electric Power (since April 1, 2010). In an effort to provide expedient and quality service to residents and others who enjoy Smith Mountain Lake, the Tri-County Lake Administrative Commission continues to assist residents by reporting channel marker light malfunctions on their behalf. Reports of malfunctioning lights or damaged buoys should be provided to us by calling 540-721-4400 or email during our normal operating hours. We will report the malfunction to American Electric Power. In the event that a report needs to be made when our office is closed, reports should be made directly to American Electric Power at 1-800-956-4237.

Regulatory Marker Application


If you are interested in monitoring a specific channel marker or shoal/rock buoy, please let us know. Additional information about this program can be found on our Adopt-A-Light/Adopt-A-Buoy page.

Navigation aids on Smith Mountain Lake