Bankhead Lake

Bankhead Lake

Bankhead Lake Diagram
Bankhead Lake Diagram

The second largest lake on the Black Warrior river, Bankhead Reservoir is centrally located in Alabama and offers plenty of residential and commercial waterfront property for camping, boating and fishing.

Bankhead Reservoir contains 9,200 acres and is the second largest lake on the Warrior River. Located approximately 15 miles west of Birmingham and 30 miles northeast of Tuscaloosa, Bankhead Reservoir flows through Walker, Jefferson and Tuscaloosa Counties.


Alabama Power Company impounded Bankhead Reservoir in 1915. Bankhead Lake is best known for catches of largemouth bass and spotted bass. Largemouth bass up to 16 inches are abundant with lower numbers of larger bass. Trophy potential exists in backwater areas. The spotted bass have modest numbers of 8 to 13-inch fish but lower numbers of larger fish. Better opportunities for anglers to catch spotted bass are found in lower sections of the reservoir.

Another popular sport fish in Bankhead Lake are hybrid striped bass. Hybrids in the 3-8 pound range are commonly caught in swift tailrace and headwaters in spring and fall. The headwaters of Bankhead Reservoir are the Smith Lake tailwaters.


The Black Warrior & Tombigbee Lakes (BW&T) consists of six lakes (Demopolis, Coffeeville, Warrior, Oliver, Holt and Bankhead) with a combined total length of 457 miles and 39,800 surface acres of water. There are boat launching ramps at nearly all the Corps public recreation areas.

There are three privately owned marinas that provide fuel, boat repair, supplies, rentals and other boater’s needs. Boaters from across the state and the country come here for their boating pleasures. Whether, water skiing, sightseeing, sailing, power boating or jet skiing, these waters are for everyone.

Fishing is the most popular activity on the lakes. The Black Warrior & Tombigbee Lakes (BW&T) consist of six lakes – Demopolis, Coffeeville, Warrior, Oliver, Holt, and Bankhead. The lakes vary in size from the largest, Demopolis Lake with a surface area of 10,000 acres, to the smallest, Oliver Lake with a surface area of 800 acres. No matter the size of the lake, there is plenty of excellent fishing in these waters.

Fish Attractors on Bankhead Lake