Lay Lake Fishing Report Guide

Lay Lake Fishing Report Guide

Hey, fishing friends! Are you ready to discover one of Alabama’s most cherished fishing spots? Let me introduce you to Lay Lake. Located on the Coosa River, this picturesque reservoir has been a hotspot for anglers for decades. With its calm waters, diverse fish population, and beautiful surroundings, Lay Lake is a must-visit for anyone who loves to fish. Let’s explore what makes Lay Lake such an amazing destination!

Lay Lake Fishing Details

Quick Facts about Lay Lake

  • Water Surface: 12,000 acres
  • Shoreline: 289 miles
  • Average Depth: 22 feet
  • Max Depth: 88 feet
  • Surface Elevation: 396 feet
  • Location: Shelby, Talladega, Coosa, and Chilton Counties, Alabama
  • Coordinates: 33.0979° N, 86.5006° W
  • Accessibility: Multiple public access points, boat ramps, and marinas
  • Type of Lake: Reservoir
  • Lake Amenities: Boat ramps, picnic areas, fishing piers, campgrounds, and marinas

Lay Lake, formed by the Lay Dam, stretches for about 48 miles along the Coosa River. This reservoir is known for its clean, clear waters and its reputation as a fantastic fishing destination. With plenty of recreational facilities and amenities, it’s an ideal spot for a family fishing trip or a solo angling adventure.

Types of Fish in Lay Lake

Lay Lake is teeming with a variety of fish species, making it a paradise for anglers. Here’s a closer look at the types of fish you can catch and where you’re likely to find them:

Largemouth Bass

  • Where to Find: Largemouth bass are commonly found around submerged structures, such as fallen trees, docks, and vegetation. Early morning and late evening are prime times for catching them.
  • Best Spots: Shallow coves, creek mouths, and near the dam.

Spotted Bass

  • Where to Find: These bass prefer deeper waters and are often located near rocky points and ledges.
  • Best Spots: Main lake points and along the river channels.


  • Where to Find: Crappie are usually found around brush piles, submerged timber, and boat docks. Spring and fall are the best seasons for crappie fishing.
  • Best Spots: Creek channels and coves with submerged structure.

Bluegill and Sunfish

  • Where to Find: These fish are typically found in shallow waters near vegetation and structures.
  • Best Spots: Near docks, weed beds, and the edges of coves.


  • Where to Find: Catfish inhabit the deeper parts of the lake, especially near the bottom. They’re more active during the night.
  • Best Spots: Deep channels and the lower end of the lake.

Striped Bass

  • Where to Find: Striped bass are often found in open waters and are known for their aggressive feeding habits.
  • Best Spots: Near the dam and in the main lake channels.

Best Fishing Baits, Lures, and Tackle for Lay Lake Fishing

Choosing the right bait, lures, and tackle can make your fishing trip more successful. Here are some recommendations for Lay Lake:

Largemouth and Spotted Bass

  • Baits: Live bait such as shad and minnows.
  • Lures: Plastic worms, crankbaits, and spinnerbaits.
  • Tackle: Medium-heavy rods with 12-15 lb test line.


  • Baits: Small minnows and crappie jigs.
  • Lures: Tiny spinners and tube jigs.
  • Tackle: Light to medium rods with 4-8 lb test line.

Bluegill and Sunfish

  • Baits: Worms, crickets, and small insects.
  • Lures: Small spinners and flies.
  • Tackle: Ultralight rods with 2-4 lb test line.


  • Baits: Chicken liver, cut bait, and stink bait.
  • Lures: Not typically used, but dough balls can work.
  • Tackle: Heavy rods with 20+ lb test line.

Striped Bass

  • Baits: Live shad and herring.
  • Lures: Jigs and topwater plugs.
  • Tackle: Heavy rods with 15-25 lb test line.
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Best Fishing Spot Locations at Lay Lake Fishing

Knowing where to fish is key to a successful day on the water. Here are some top fishing spots at Lay Lake:

Near the Dam

The area around Lay Dam is known for its deep waters and abundant striped bass. This spot is great for those looking to catch larger fish.

Creek Channels

The creek channels, particularly around the upper end of the lake, are ideal for crappie and bass. The submerged timber and brush piles provide excellent cover for these fish.

Main Lake Points

These points are prime locations for spotted bass, especially where there are rocky ledges and drop-offs.

Shallow Coves

Shallow coves with plenty of vegetation are perfect for bluegill, sunfish, and largemouth bass. These areas are best fished early in the morning or late in the evening.

Tributary Mouths

The mouths of tributaries, where smaller streams feed into the lake, are hotspots for various fish species, including bass and crappie.

Fishing Tips and Recommendations for Lay Lake Fishing

Here are some tips to help you make the most of your fishing trip to Lay Lake:

Time of Day

Fish are generally more active during the early morning and late evening. Plan your fishing trips around these times for the best results.

Seasonal Patterns

  • Spring: Fish are more likely to be found in shallow waters as they move to spawn.
  • Summer: Fish tend to move to deeper, cooler waters during the heat of the day.
  • Fall: Fish become more active again as the water cools down.
  • Winter: Fish slow down and stay in deeper waters.

Weather Conditions

Pay attention to the weather. Overcast days can be excellent for fishing as fish are more likely to come to the surface. Windy conditions can also stir up the water and make fish more active.

Use Electronics

Fish finders and GPS units can be incredibly helpful in locating schools of fish and identifying underwater structures.

Stay Quiet

Fish are sensitive to noise. Keep your movements and noise to a minimum to avoid spooking them.

Lay Lake Fishing Reviews

Here are some glowing reviews from anglers who’ve had a blast fishing at Lay Lake:

  1. Sam P. – “Lay Lake is my favorite fishing spot! The bass fishing is top-notch, and the scenery is breathtaking. I always have a fantastic time here!”
  2. Jen K. – “I’ve caught some of my biggest crappie at Lay Lake. The lake is well-maintained, and there are plenty of good spots to fish from shore.”
  3. Mike R. – “I love fishing for catfish at Lay Lake. The deep channels near the dam are perfect, and I’ve never been disappointed.”
  4. Anna M. – “The variety of fish at Lay Lake is impressive. It’s a great place for a family fishing trip, with something for everyone.”
  5. Chris T. – “The amenities around the lake are fantastic. Plenty of boat ramps and picnic areas make it easy to spend the whole day out on the water.”

Top-Rated RV Parks and Campgrounds Near Lay Lake

If you’re planning a fishing trip to Lay Lake, you might want to stay nearby. Here are five top-rated RV parks and campgrounds:

1. Lay Lake Campground

  • Distance to Lake: 0 miles (lakefront)
  • Features: Lakefront sites, boat ramps, picnic areas, and restrooms.
  • Amenities: Full hookups, Wi-Fi, and a camp store.

2. Coosa River Campground

  • Distance to Lake: 5 miles
  • Features: Spacious sites, swimming pool, and clubhouse.
  • Amenities: Full hookups, laundry facilities, and a dog park.

3. Wind Creek State Park

  • Distance to Lake: 20 miles
  • Features: Mountain views, hiking trails, and a lake.
  • Amenities: Water and electric hookups, restrooms, and showers.

4. Chilton County RV Park

  • Distance to Lake: 10 miles
  • Features: Marina, boat rentals, and fishing docks.
  • Amenities: Full hookups, on-site restaurant, and swimming pool.

5. Shelby Shores RV Park

  • Distance to Lake: 15 miles
  • Features: Lake access, picnic areas, and playgrounds.
  • Amenities: Water and electric hookups, restrooms, and showers.

Lay Lake Fishing Summary

Lay Lake is a fantastic destination for any angler. With its clear waters, diverse fish species, and beautiful surroundings, it offers a truly memorable fishing experience. Whether you’re an experienced fisherman or just starting out, Lay Lake has something for everyone. So pack your gear, hit the road, and get ready for some great fishing at this Alabama treasure!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Lay Lake Fishing

1. What’s the best time of year to fish at Lay Lake?

The best time to fish at Lay Lake is during the spring and fall when fish are more active. However, you can find good fishing year-round if you know where to look.

2. Do I need a fishing license to fish at Lay Lake?

Yes, you need an Alabama fishing license to fish at Lay Lake. You can purchase one online or at local retailers.

3. Are there boat rentals available at Lay Lake?

Yes, there are several marinas around Lay Lake where you can rent boats.

4. Can I fish from the shore at Lay Lake?

Absolutely! There are many accessible shore fishing spots around the lake, including public parks and designated fishing piers.

5. What amenities are available at Lay Lake?

Lay Lake offers various amenities including boat ramps, picnic areas, fishing piers, and campgrounds. It’s a great place to spend a day or even a weekend.

I hope this guide helps you plan your fishing trip to Lay Lake. Happy fishing, and may you catch the big one!

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Best Fishing Bait, Lures & Tackle

Here’s some of the best fishing bait, fishing lures and fishing tackle Lay Lake Fishing Report Guide: