Lake Carnico, Nicholas County, Carlisle, KY


The Lake Carnico community is made up of a group of people who enjoy the peace and beauty of this lovely corner of Nicholas County. We are called the Nicholas County Development Corporation, and we own the entire watershed of this lovely 105 acre lake. The property owners, in addition to owning their lots, hold shares in the corporation, with a narrow strip of land surrounding the lake being reserved by the Corporation for any necessary Corporation use. The Corporation restrictions are rules set up to allow freedom to enjoy this setting, but to keep the entire property environmentally sound, to protect the health of the lake, and to make it an appealing place to live with respect to one’s neighbors. It is a wildlife refuge, with no hunting allowed, and a protected forest.

In 1961, some very far-sighted people purchased the land and began the process of  designing and building what is now Lake Carnico. This valley has five springs, which may account for the nearly constant water level. With financial help from the Fish and Wildlife Department, the Highway Department, and “Chain of Lakes” state legislation, the dam was built. The lake filled in 1963-1964. It was designed for recreation and vacation cottages. The lake area became such a wonderful place to live that many people decided to build permanent homes around the lake.

A contest for naming the lake was held and publicized. A combination of Carlisle and Nicholas County – “Carnico” – was chosen for the name.

During the annual meeting of shareholders held every May, major decisions are made and information is brought to the body. A Board of Directors, made up of five people, is elected and empowered to guide the Corporation administratively. The Corporation maintains an office and employs a secretary.

The Corporation operates a beach and boat dock facility for public use which is controlled by the Corporation. The Golf Club building is privately owned, but the golf course is owned by the Development Corporation and leased, long-term, to the golf course management. The roadways around and through the community are maintained by the county.

There are a number of activities during the year which bring residents together for fun:  pontoon tie-ups on Memorial Day weekend, Independence Day, and Labor Day weekend, an a fall picnic on the beach. Suggestions for Lake Carnico community activities are always welcome.

Nicholas County Development Corp.