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Lake Neely Henry

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Fish and Fishing in
Neely Henry Lake

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Neely Henry Reservoir is located in northeast Alabama on the Coosa River, near the towns of Gadsden and Ohatchee. Just off I-59, the reservoir envelops 11,235 acres and extends 77.6 miles from the dam upstream to Weiss dam. Generally a river-run lake, Neely Henry fans out toward the dam to offer more open water. Sandwiched between Weiss Lake (a.k.a. "The Crappie Capital of the World") and Logan Martin, Neely Henry is one of the best-kept fishing secrets in Alabama.

Largemouth bass and spotted bass are the most targeted fish by anglers on Neely Henry. Although growth is average for both species, plumpness for both is close to the top in the state. The majority of largemouth bass are 12-15 inches although there are good numbers of 15- to 18-inch fish present.   The spotted bass population is exceptional for large spots and the numbers of spots in the 14 to 20-inch size range continues to be one of the best in the state.  Neely Henry ranked third statewide in the percent of successful anglers per trip. Bass club tournament data for Neely Henry can be found here.

White crappie fishing can be good in Neely Henry although fall trap netting indicated that most of the crappie of harvestable size would be in the 9- to 11-inch size range. Early spring and fall are the best times to fish. Remember, there is a 9-inch minimum length on crappie in Neely Henry and most lakes statewide (Weiss Lake has 10-inch minimum). Note: Anglers may use a maximum "of three rods and reels, or poles, or any combination thereof on Weiss Reservoir or Neely Henry Lake, at any time."

Striped bass fishing is best at the headwaters (below Weiss dam) during spring runs and into the summer during power generation. Fall fishing in the tailwaters can also be good. Several spring fed creek such as Ohatchee and Cane Creeks hold lots of striped bass during the summer. Good numbers of fish over 7 pounds are being caught.

Alabama Power Company has improved fishing by providing habitat in this lake. Coordinates of these habitat improvements are available as an Excel spreadsheet or a GPS download from www.alabamapower.com/lakes/fishdata.asp.

It is illegal to possess blueback herring Duane Raver's Blueback Herring courtesy of the US Fish and Wildlife Service in Alabama. Regulations designate legal capture methods for bait and specify additional species that may not be used for bait.

Link list (disclaimer):

Fishing license information may be found at: www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/license/. Instant licensing is available via the Internet (2% fee), via the telephone by calling 1-888-848-6887 ($3.95 fee), or at 900 vendors and probate offices in Alabama. All youth age 15 and younger fish for free.

Possession and creel limits for Alabama public waters are listed at: www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/regulations/
"It shall be unlawful for any angler to fish with more than three rods and reels, or poles, or any combination thereof on Weiss Reservoir or Neely Henry Lake, at any time."

Bass fishing quality at Lake Neely Henry is assessed from bass club tournament results at www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/where/reservoirs/quality/.
If you are a member of a bass club, please consider being a part of our Bass Angler Information Team. We use information from clubs to help better manage your lakes for fishing.

State fish management information and Alabama reservoir location, size and elevation are listed at: www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/where/reservoirs/

Regional information may be found at the north Alabama regional tourism site, www.northalabama.org/, call 1-800-648-5381. For motels, bed and breakfast inns, resorts, cabins, RV parks, and camping accommodations, look "Stay" section.

www.neelyhenry.com/ has general information about Lake Neely Henry. 

Bass fishing reports for Neely Henry Lake may be available at: www.wmi.org/bassfish/reports/alabama/
Talk with anglers that fish Neely Henry Reservoir at www.al.com/forums/fishing/.

Current water levels may be found for Neely Dam at: http://iwin.nws.noaa.gov/iwin/al/hydro.html

Fishing Guides:
King Fisher Guide Service - Dustin King at 256-504-6659, dkingfisher89@aol.com
Capt. Chris Jackson, chris@chrisjacksonfishing.com, 205-706-2425, chrisjacksonfishing.com
Reed Montgomery, www.fishingalabama.com/ 1-205-663-1504, ALABASSGYD@aol.com
C & B North Alabama Guide Service at www.angelfire.com/al2/fishingguideservice/ - Charlie Slaton at 256-593-7249 or 256-572-6217 and Bobby Bright at 256-593-7830 or 256-738-4293

2010 analysis by the Alabama Department of Public Health indicated that Neely Henry Lake does not have any problems with chemical contamination of fish.  Information on other fish consumption advisories may be found at the Alabama Department of Public Health Web site, www.adph.org. Consumption advisory information is found under "A-Z Contents" by looking for "Fish Consumption Advisories." 

It shall be unlawful to intentionally stock or release any fish, mussel, snail, crayfish or their embryos including bait fish into the public waters of Alabama under the jurisdiction of the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries as provided in Rule 220-2-.42 except those waters from which it came without the written permission of a designated employee of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources authorized by the Director of the Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries to issue such permit. The provisions of this rule shall not apply to the incidental release of bait into the water during the normal process of fishing.

Ten Islands Historic Park-Neely Henry Reservoir (swimming, Hiking, Fishing, Boat Ramp) Hours: 5:00 A.M. til 9:00 P.M. Year around. Adjacent to Neely Henry Dam: From I-20 take Hwy 77 N. to Ohatchee, Turn Left on Hwy 144, 1 mile on right. Phone (205) 472-0481 or (256) 396-5093.

The Fisheries Section's District II Supervisor can answer specific questions about Neely Henry Lake by sending mail to: dan.catchings@dcnr.alabama.gov.

Prepared by: Fisheries Section, Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. This site is presented for information only the Fisheries Section cannot be responsible for the quality of information or services offered through linked sites, disclaimer. To have your site included, send your URL, email address, or telephone number to the Fisheries Web Master, doug.darr@dcnr.alabama.gov. The Fisheries Section reserves the right to select sites based on relevant and appropriate content, of interest to our viewers. If you discover errors in the content or links of this page, please contact Doug Darr. Thank you.

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