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Lake Information for Lake Tuscaloosa


Located five miles north of the cities of Tuscaloosa and Northport in west central Alabama, Lake Tuscaloosa is a 5,885-acre water supply reservoir with 177 miles of shoreline. The tailwater area (North River) drains into the Black Warrior River basin and is a popular recreational area to many anglers. When the reservoir was impounded by the City of Tuscaloosa in 1971, little material was left behind to serve as fish habitat. Consequently, biologists suspected that the lake would be clear and infertile with relatively low fish production. This has proved to be the case, and water visibilities near the dam often exceed 20 feet. Upper reaches of the lake near Binion and Turkey Creeks are more fertile, have lower water visibilities, and are generally better areas to fish.

Facilities and Parks: 

Lake Tuscaloosa was constructed to supply domestic and industrial water for the City of Tuscaloosa. However, the lake has become very popular for various types of recreation including boating, swimming and fishing. There are public and private boat ramps located on the lake, as well as several private marinas. Public launches are located at Binion Creek (State), Rock Quarry and Sharps Landing (Municipal). Detailed maps of Lake Tuscaloosa are available at local marinas and sporting goods stores.

Fishing Description: 

The most common sport fish found in Lake Tuscaloosa include the Alabama spotted bass, largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish, and white crappie. Popular non-game fish include blue catfish, channel catfish, freshwater drum, buffalo and carp. Forage species commonly found in the lake include gizzard shad and threadfin shad and various minnows and shiners.

Overall, the status of the fish population in Lake Tuscaloosa remains unchanged from the 1980s. The fishery continues to be forage limited, and growth of important sport fish species such as black bass and crappie range from below average to average. Anglers that fish the lake frequently complain about low catch rates and the small size of fish. During 2000, bass tournament results ranked Lake Tuscaloosa 11th out of 25 major reservoirs in pounds of bass caught per day. Lake Tuscaloosa was the site of the B.A.S.S. Federation Qualifying Tournament in 2001, which was held out of Binion Creek Access Area.

Blue Catfish
Channel Catfish
Largemouth Bass
Optional Information
Surface area: 
Lake Tuscaloosa
Lake type: 

Businesses Located Nearby

Bait & Tackle

    Fast & Easy Food Store
  • 3301 Greensboro Ave - Tuscaloosa, AL
  • (205) 343-6999
    Fast & Easy Food Store
  • 5500 Highway 69 S - Tuscaloosa, AL
  • (205) 345-4776
    Fast & Easy Food Stores
  • 3800 Joe Mallisham Pky - Tuscaloosa, AL
  • (205) 345-8205

Boat Rental

    International Boat Rentals Incorporated
  • 2521 Arbor Cv - Birmingham, AL
  • (205) 967-8176

Vacation Rental

    Motel 6
  • 4700 Mcfarland Blvd E - Tuscaloosa, AL
  • (205) 759-4942
    Best Western
  • 2015 Mcfarland Blvd - Northport, AL
  • (205) 339-5200

Bar and Restaurant

    Subs N More
  • 4396 Rice Mine Rd Ne - Tuscaloosa, AL
  • (205) 345-4500
    Archibald & Woodrow's
  • 5900 Watermelon Rd - Northport, AL
  • (205) 758-8539
    Golden Rule BBQ Northport
  • 824 Mcfarland Blvd - Northport, AL
  • (205) 330-4000

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