Aliceville Lake, Alabama & Mississippi, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - South - Alabama - Metropolitan - Mississippi - Pines Region -

Also known as:  Pickensville Lake

Aliceville Lake, known to fishing locals as Pickensville Lake, is one of 10 lakes on the 234-mile man-made Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway. The Tenn-Tom, as the artificial waterway is popularly called, joins the Tennessee and Tombigbee Rivers and runs south through northeast Mississippi and western Alabama. The waterway, a US Army Corps of Engineers project, is a navigational shortcut that facilitates water traffic from the interior to the Gulf of Mexico and circumnavigates over 800 miles of travelling.

While the entire Tenn-Tom was officially opened to the public in 1985, Aliceville Lake was impounded by the Tom Bevill Lock and Dam five years earlier in 1980. The lake crosses the border between the nature-scape Pines Region of Mississippi and the action-packed Metropolitan Region of Alabama. The majority of the 8,300-acre body of water is in Pickens County, Alabama right next to the town of Pickensville and just a hand’s throw from Aliceville in a land of timber and farms.

Pickensville Lake serves navigational, recreational and wildlife mitigation purposes along the waterway. Camping, picnicking, swimming, boating, fishing, hunting and bird watching are some of the activities available on the lake. The Pickensville Campground, Raleigh Ryan Access Area and Tom Bevill East and West Bank Fishing Areas provide a host of facilities to patrons that include parking, restrooms, wheelchair accessibility, and playgrounds.

Anglers enjoy a wide variety of fishing targets on Aliceville Lake, focusing mainly on the standing timber in the lake. When the lake was impounded, the Alabama Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division stocked it with 100,000 Florida largemouth bass. The lake today is popular for largemouth bass and crappie but also has abundant populations of bluegill, redear sunfish, catfish and drum. Note that, since 1993, there has been a 9-inch minimum length limit on crappie.

Wood ducks, Canada geese and migratory birds such as mallards, northern pintails, gadwalls and widgeons offer great bird watching opportunities. Hunters will find designated hunting areas and there are various hunting clubs scattered throughout Pickens County. White-tailed deer, quail, doves, wild turkey are popular game. The lands surrounding the Tenn-Tom Waterway are home to all kinds of plant and wildlife species, including some endangered or threatened species. The red hills salamander and gopher tortoise are two protected species and there is a project to restore the Southern bald eagle to the dominance it once had in the area.

The Tom Bevill Lock and Dam Visitor Center on Aliceville Lake invites visitors into a plantation mansion reproduction and houses exhibitions on the Tombigbee River and Waterway. Visitors can also picnic, hike and fish around the Center. The US Snagboat Montgomery, at the Visitor Center, is a museum boat and National Historic Landmark that offers educational activities, tours and fascinating maritime facts.

A small, rural town, Pickens County offers stirring history and a few points of interest near Pickensville Lake. The Aliceville Museum and Cultural Arts Center features the relics of German POWs (Prisoners of War) in Aliceville and commemorates the time when World War II German POWs were transported and taken to one of the largest WWII POW camps in The United States. In Carrollton sits the Pickens County Court House, which has in one of its windows the image of a ghostly face that has become symbolic of a local myth. Pickens County, home to international blues artist Willie King, is a place of southern rhythms and has strong bluegrass roots.

Lodging and dining is just as charming and southern as the area. After a satisfyingly long expedition on the waters, retire to a bed and breakfast Victorian house or satiate your hunger with southern cuisine specialties like fried catfish at one of the area’s restaurants. An Aliceville Lake experience will leave you full, rested and wanting more.

Things to do at Aliceville Lake

  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • Museum
  • Playground

Fish species found at Aliceville Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Catfish
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Redear Sunfish (Shellcracker)
  • Sunfish

Aliceville Lake Photo Gallery

    Aliceville Lake Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Artificial Reservoir, Dammed

    Water Level Control: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

    Surface Area: 8,300 acres

    Shoreline Length: 148 miles

    Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 136 feet

    Average Depth: 7 feet

    Maximum Depth: 42 feet

    Water Volume: 60,400 acre-feet

    Completion Year: 1980

    Drainage Area: 5,785 sq. miles

    Trophic State: Eutrophic

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

    You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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