Lake Santeetlah, NC

Lake Santeetlah, situated in Graham County, is a small town made up of .2 square miles.

2018 Best Guide to Lake Santeetlah, NC

October 16, 2018

The town was one of the later locations to be settled, as the area wasn't settled until the latter half of the 19th century, and would be incorporated until 1893. 

The town was known as Thunderbird Mountain when Detroit native real estate salesman Kenneth S. Keyes purchased property in the area. The area would be known as Thunderbird Mountain until 1989, when it would assume its current name of Lake Santeetlah.  


The median resident age in Lake Santeetlah is 54 years. The median estimated household income is about $44,000 making it about $4,000 less than the North Carolina average. The estimated per capita is about $25,000. The average price for a home in Lake Santeetlah is about $172,000 (2015) which is $12,000 more than the North Carolina Average. Expect to pay about $1,300 a month for rent. 

The racial makeup of Lake Santeetlah is 81% White, 14% Black, 2% Two or more races, and 3% other. 96% of the population are high school graduates, with 35% holding a Bachelor's Degree or higher. 52% are married, 14% are divorced, 1% are separated, 6% are widowed, leaving 27% that have never been married.

Towns Nearby

Robbinsville, NC
Andrews, NC
Marble, NC
Lanier, TN
Murphy, NC
Hayesville, NC
Townsend, TN
Bryson City, NC

Graham County

Lake Santeetlah belongs to Graham County in the western part of North Carolina. The county was named after William A. Graham, and was founded in 1872. Graham County has a population of 9,000 and its largest town Robbinsville, with a population of 750, is the county seat.

Graham County borders Swain, Macon, Cherokee, Blount (Tennessee), and Monroe (Tennessee) counties.

Graham County is made up of 302 square miles. 292 of which is land with the remaining 10 as water.


The population of Lake Santeetlah, NC is about 45. The population increased from about 50 to near 70 between 1990 and 2000, but has decreased since then.


The elevation of Lake Santeetlah, NC is 2,000 feet above sea level.

Zip Code

The zip code for Lake Santeetlah, NC is 27882.

Area Code

The area code for Lake Santeetlah, NC is 828.

Politics and Religion

Historically speaking Lake Santeetlah and Graham County have voted mostly Republican, with 70% going to Mitt Romney during the 2012 Presidential Election. This represents the trend for the previous four or five elections.

As of 2010, 64% of the population are religiously unafiliated (Nones). About 35% are Protestants with Catholics making up around 1%.


The unemployment rate for Lake Santeetlah is about 10% (2015), making it higher than the state average of around 5%.

Retail and manufacturing make nearly 50% of the most common industries in the town.

Newspaper & Obituaries

The Graham Star is the primary newspaper that covers the Graham County area.