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Best Lakes in Alabama

What comes to your mind when you first hear of ‘Alabama’? Where is Alabama situated?

Alabama is a state in the southern part of the US and is home to numerous natural landscapes like mountains, streams, rivers, like moving to alabama guides, and valleys. 3 percent of Alabama constitutes water and has over 100 lakes. Some of the best lakes in Alabama are Guntersville Lake, Lewis Smith Lake, Logan Martin Lake, and Wheeler Lake. 

Read on to learn more about other lakes famous for their natural landscapes or recreational activities. These lakes are perfect vacation spots for tourists throughout the year. The best time to visit Orange Beach, Alabama, is between March and May.

Best Lakes in Alabama

What is the cleanest lake in Alabama?

Lewis Smith Lake is the cleanest lake in Alabama. It has crystal clear waters and blissful scenery making it an ideal vacationing spot in Alabama. It is the third most pristine lake in the US and is the most beautiful lake in the Southeastern US. Lewis Smith Lake offers breathtaking sunsets. Thus, Lewis Smith Lake is the clearest and cleanest lake in Alabama and is a must-visit spot for all incoming vacationers and tourists. The lake is also known as Smith Lake.

What’s the deepest lake in Alabama?

Lewis Smith Lake is the deepest lake in Alabama. The lake has a depth of 264 feet and is one of the deepest lakes in the region. The shores of the lake offer breathtaking views of natural scenery and are slowly turning into popular summer destinations. It covers an area of 22,000 acres and is regarded as the most beautiful lake in the southeastern US. The lake has three reservoirs and a shoreline of over 500 miles (approx 800 km). The entire pool in Lewis Smith Lake has 510 feet (approx 160 m) in height.

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11 Best Lakes In Alabama For Vacations

Alabama has over 100 lakes, and around 3 percent of the state is covered with water. Some of the lakes are man-made, whereas others are natural. Best Lakes in Alabama are listed below based on essential factors like recreational activities, cleanliness, facilities, and amenities. Read on to have a detailed overview of lakes in northern, southern, and western Alabama. Relocating to Alabama guide serves as a perfect guide for both residents and tourists.

Lakes in Northern Alabama

Northern Alabama boasts of natural attractions, picturesque waterfalls, and majestic landscapes. The region is home to some of the best fishing lakes in Alabama.

1. Guntersville Lake

Spread over a sprawling area of 69,000 acres, Lake Guntersville is the largest lake in Alabama. An array of recreational activities like fishing, swimming, boating, and skiing are offered here. The lake is located between Guntersville and Bridgeport in the northern part of Alabama.

Guntersville Lake
Guntersville Lake

There is a dock, swimming area, fishing pier, and picnic areas along the shorelines of 120 km. 2400 hectares of woodlands surround the area of Lake Guntersville, making it ideal for recreational activities like bird-watching, hiking, and biking. Popular species of birds like bald eagles, gadwalls, lesser scaup, and red-breasted mergansers are spotted here.

Guntersville Lake is known for bass fishing, but a fishing license is mandatory here. The lake hosts a variety of species like bluegill, crappie, bream, and catfish. Above all, boat launches are available for bass fishing.

Can you swim in Lake Guntersville?

Yes, there are innumerable places and points along the shore of Lake Guntersville spread across 120 kilometers for swimming, boating, and kayaking.

Are there alligators in Lake Guntersville?

Lake Guntersville shares boundaries with the Tennessee River. There have been recent reports of alligator spotting near Lake Guntersville.

2. Lewis Smith Lake

Lewis Smith Lake is the most beautiful lake in the southeastern US. The lake is known for its clear waters, blissful sceneries, and natural landscapes. Lewis Smith Lake is also known as the cleanest lake in Alabama, having a depth of 264 feet, making it the deepest lake in Alabama.

Lewis Smith Lake
Lewis Smith Lake

The Holt Lock and Dam and Bankhead Lock and Dam in Lewis Smith Lake have owned by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Lewis Smith Lake is situated on the Sipsey Fork in Black Warrior River, spreading across Cullman, Walkman, and Winston counties.

The lake is one of the most dangerous lakes to swim in because of its depth and excessive habitation. Indianhead cliff jump is one of the most popular attractions of Lake Smith.

The lake is known for bass fishing, boating, hiking, and biking. The natural landscapes and habitation make it the perfect spot for hiking and biking. Birdwatching is a popular activity in this area as varied types of fish and birds are found in the region.

Are there alligators in Lewis Smith Lake?

There are no signs of alligators in Lewis Smith Lake by no natural means. No alligators have been placed in the lake by the Alabama Conservation Area and Natural Resources. Hence, one cannot find alligators in Lewis Smith Lake.

Is Lewis Smith Lake clean?

Lewis Smith Lake is the cleanest lake in Alabama and has the most transparent waters and pristine beaches.

Are they draining Lewis Smith Lake?

Yes, there are plans to drain Lewis Smith Lake. The drainage process will begin by 2022 and will be completed by 2024 with the removal of the Lewis Smith Dam.

3. Wheeler Lake

Wheeler lake encompasses an area of 67,000 acres and is the second-largest in Alabama. It is located in northern Alabama between the cities of Rogersville and Huntsville. The lake is located along a shoreline of 50 miles and has parks like Joe Wheeler State Park and Elks River Lodge State Park. Wheeler Lake is in Madison County.

Wheeler Lake
Wheeler Lake

Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge Area is quite ideal for fishing. Various species like catfish, smallmouth or largemouth bass, bluegill, pumpkinseed, and sunfish are found here.

Swimming, boating, camping, and cruising are prime activities. Wheeler Lake is one of the famous swimming lakes in Alabama.

Can you swim in Wheeler Lake?

Swimming is prohibited at Wheeler Lake; however, skiing is permitted, so one can taste skiing.

What is the deepest part of Wheeler Lake?

The deepest part of Wheeler Lake lies between Dome Island and Buck Mountain in the southern part of the lake. The lowest depth is 196 feet (60m).

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4. Neely Henry Lake

Spread over an area of 11,000 acres and is one of the best fishing lakes in Alabama. Neely Henry Lake is situated on the Coosa River and is between the towns of Gadsden and Ohatchee.

Neely Henry Lake
Neely Henry Lake

Popular species found in Neely Henry Lake are largemouth bass, crappie, and bluegill. The lake is near Gadsden city in the Coosa River.

The Neely Henry Dam on the Coosa River is named after Alabama Power’s executive. The lake has a shoreline of 540 km, and recreational activities like swimming, birdwatching, hiking, and boating are found here. Above all, numerous cabins and boats can be rented here.

Where is Henry Neely Lake?

Henry Neely Lake is near Gadsden city on the Coosa River.

How do you fish Neely Henry?

Neely Henry is the best fishing lake in Alabama, and various species of fish like largemouth bass, crappie, and bluegill are found here.

5. Weiss Lake

Weiss Lake is a confluence of the Coosa River, Chattooga River, and Little River. The lake shares its boundaries with Georgia state; 90 percent of Weiss Lake is in Alabama, and only 10 percent of it is in Georgia.

Weiss Lake
Weiss Lake

Many hotels, campgrounds, and marinas surround this lake, making it a perfect vacation spot. A total of 11 bridges cross the lake.

The lake has a shoreline of 440 miles and is operated by Alabama Power Company. Weiss Lake is 564 feet (162 m) above sea level, and it spreads across an area of 30,200 acres.

Popular picnic spots like Cherokee County and DeSoto State Park encompass this lake. It is one of the best fishing lakes in Alabama. Bass fishing is prominent from February to May, whereas crappie fishing is done from March to May. The lake is also known as the “Crappie Capital of the World”.

Recreational activities like swimming, jet-skiing, canoeing, camping, and boating are organized here throughout the year.

What city is Weiss Lake in Alabama?

Weiss Lake is in Cherokee County in Alabama, sharing boundaries with both Alabama and Georgia.

Is Weiss Lake shallow?

Weiss Lake is a shallow lake formed by three rivers, namely Coosa, Chattooga, and Little rivers.

6. Wilson Lake

Wilson Dam created Wilson Lake and encompassed an area of 15,930 acres. The lake has a shoreline of 154 miles and is located on the Tennessee River. Bass fishing is done during September and has plenty of smallmouth or largemouth bass.

Wilson Lake
Wilson Lake

The lake is managed by the Tennessee River Authority.

Wilson Lake stretches from Florence city to Wheeler Dam. Fishing can be done along the shores of Wilson lake. Campgrounds and harbors are located along the east side of the lake. The lake has an area of 6272 hectares.

How deep is Wilson Lake Alabama?

Wilson Lake in Alabama has a depth of 90 feet and shares boundaries with Colbert, Lawrence, and Lauderdale countries.

Can you fish Wilson Lake?

Fishing can be done in Wilson Lake. There are specific timings for fishing throughout the week, and the fishing ground is open throughout the day.

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Lakes in Eastern Alabama

Eastern Alabama is home to the most popular cities, like Huntsville, Madison, Gadsden, and Anniston. But do you know about the most attractive lakes in Eastern Alabama? Here, we are talking about Lake Martin and Logan Martin Lake. Above all, the lakes are best known for fishing activities. 

7. Lake Martin

Lake Martin has locations in Tallapoosa, Coosa, and Elmore countries and surrounds an area of 44,000 acres. It is one of the largest man-made lakes in Alabama. Recreational activities like swimming, boating, and water skiing. Lake Martin has a 1200 km shoreline of wooded lands.

Lake Martin
Lake Martin

The lake is situated to the south of Alexander city and is a popular getaway location for residents of Alabama. The lake has numerous small islands where bird-watching and wildlife spotting are carried out.

Striped bass fishing regulations are in place in Lake Martin. The lake is one of the best swimming lakes in Alabama. Lake Martin has low fertility and hence has less infestation of bass species of fish.

What is at the bottom of Lake Martin?

The remnants of ancient civilizations, communities, and cemeteries lie at the bottom of Lake Martin.

Is Lake Martin water clean?

Lake Martin has clean and clear waters. It is also regarded as the South’s greatest lake.

8. Logan Martin Lake

Logan Martin is located on the Coosa River and has a shoreline of 443 km. The lake has a depth of 34 meters. Range of recreational activities like water skiing, swimming, boating, and fishing. Largemouth and spotted bass are found in abundance in Logan Lake Martin. The lake is also known as the “Lake of a Thousand Coves”.

Logan Martin Lake
Logan Martin Lake

The locality surrounding Logan MartinLake is swanky and is home to many multi-millionaires. There are two boat ramps and a marina on the lake, offering numerous nights’ stays. The lake shares boundaries with St Clair & Talladega countries.

Is Logan Martin Lake clean?

Various lake clean-up drives are organized annually to keep Logan martin Lake clean.

How deep is Lake Logan Martin?

The depth of Lake Logan Martin ranges between 35 to 110 feet (35 m).

Lakes in Central Alabama

Central Alabama has many lakes, but Lake Wedowee is the most popular as the lake offers several activities to experience.  Boating, swimming, camping, water skiing – A place where everyone has something to partake in.

9. Lake Wedowee

Lake Wedowee was built on hydro-sites and shares boundaries with Tallapoosa River. The flooding of RL Harris Dam caused the formation of this 43,000-hectare lake. Recreational activities like swimming, boating, and water skiing are carried out here. The lake is in Randolph County and is one of the best lakes in Alabama.

Lake Wedowee
Lake Wedowee

The lake is home to the largest bass population. There are a few public boat launches for people with their boats. Flat Rock Park, located at the western end of the lake, is a popular fishing spot. The lake is one of the best fishing lakes in Alabama.

Are there crocodiles in Lake Wedowee?

Lake Wedowee has a large infestation of crocodiles from shores to the depths. They spread across miles of the lake.

Is Lake Wedowee clean?

Many drives are organized to keep Lake Wedowee clean. Therefore, you can say that Lake Wedowee is a pristine and beautiful lake.

Lakes in Southern Alabama

Walter F George Lake is the most popular lake in southern Alabama. The south end of Alabama is known for its warm swimming currents, waves, and tides. Swimming is the most sought-after recreational activity in the lakes of southern Alabama.

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10. Walter F. George Lake

This lake, also known as Eaufula Lake, flows along the Chattahoochee River and encompasses 45,000 acres. The lake shares its boundaries with Georgia, and the lake was named Eaufula after the city it is located in.

Walter F. George Lake
Walter F. George Lake

It was named Walter F George Lake after a popular Georgia State Senator. The lake has a shoreline of 1300 km and offers an array of recreational activities.

Popular spots include Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge and Lakepoint State Park. Other recreational activities include swimming, camping, boating, fishing, and hiking. Walter F George Lake is one of the popular swimming lakes in Alabama.

Where is Walter F George Lake?

Walter F George Lake is located along Chattahoochee Lake between Alabama and Georgia.

When was Lake Walter F George built?

Lake Walter F George was built in the 1950s and was renamed Lake Eufaula in 1963.

Lakes in Western Alabama

Lake Lurleen is a well-known lake in the western end of Alabama near Lake Lurleen State Park. Western Alabama is blessed with majestic landscapes and natural scenic attractions, making it ideal for hikers and bikers.

11. Lake Lurleen

Lake Lurleen encompasses an area of 250 acres and is the most prominent attraction of Lake Lurleen State Park. The lake has a shoreline of 658 hectares and is known for the abundance of catfish, largemouth bass, crappie, and bream. This lake is one of the best lakes in Alabama, situated towards the western end.

Lake Lurleen
Lake Lurleen

There are around 91 campsites on the shore of Lake Lurleen. A trail of 37 km surrounds the park for hiking and mountain biking.

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Boat launch areas, beaches, picnic areas, and a play area are found in the State Park. Perfect for a day’s getaway or long summer vacation. 

Is Lake Lurleen man-made?

Lake Lurleen is 250 acres of a man-made lake in Tuscaloosa county.

When was Lake Lurleen built?

Lake Lurleen was built in the early 2000s.

Are dogs allowed at Lake Lurleen?

Dogs are allowed at Lake Lurleen as there are around 23 miles of trail roads across the park having different ranges of difficulties.
Are you planning to spend your holidays camping here? To learn more about restaurants in Alabama, do read about fancy restaurants in Tuscaloosa.

Best Lakes in Alabama FAQs

What is the dirtiest lake in Alabama?

Wheeler Lake and Logan Martin Lake are the less cleanest of all the lakes in Alabama but not the dirtiest. Regular clean-up drives are organized to keep the lake clean. Rather than these two other lakes have pristine and clear waters, expansive shorelines, and majestic landscapes.

Lake Lewis Smith and Lake Guntersville are the best lakes in Alabama in terms of the cleanest water. 

What are some major lakes in Alabama?

Alabama has around 100 lakes in its northern, western, and southern regions. Lake Guntersville, Lake Lewis Smith, Logan Martin Lake, Lake Wedowee, and Lake Lurleen are some of the major lakes in Alabama spread across acres of land, offering spectacular views of natural landscapes. The shores of the lake are open to tourists throughout the year.

Recreational activities like camping, swimming, fishing, and boating can be done in these lakes.

Conclusion

Now that you have learned about the lakes in Alabama in detail, what are your views on them?

There are around 100 lakes in total in Alabama. Every lake is unique and offers a distinct proposition of relaxation activities like swimming, boating, camping, and hiking. The region is home to some of the best lakes in Alabama, like Lake Guntersville and Lake Lewis Smith Lake. Make sure to read the opening and closing clours before visiting these lakes. Also, consider reading other information about attractions in and around the lakes to learn more about the activities, costs, and popular services.

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