Wheeler Lake Fishing Report Guide

Wheeler Lake Fishing Report Guide

Hey there, fishing enthusiasts! Ready to explore one of Alabama’s prime fishing destinations? Let me introduce you to Wheeler Lake, a beautiful and expansive reservoir located in northern Alabama. With its stunning scenery, abundant fish, and serene environment, Wheeler Lake is a top spot for anglers of all levels. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day on the water or an exciting fishing adventure, this lake has something for everyone. Let’s dive into the details and see why Wheeler Lake should be your next fishing destination!

About Wheeler Lake Fishing

Wheeler Lake, named after Civil War General Joseph Wheeler, is the second largest lake in Alabama and a part of the Tennessee River system. It stretches 60 miles from Guntersville Dam to Wheeler Dam, offering a diverse range of fishing opportunities and breathtaking landscapes. The lake is known for its rich biodiversity and is a favorite spot for both recreational anglers and professional fishing tournaments.

Wheeler Lake Fishing Details

Quick Facts about Wheeler Lake

  • Water Surface: 67,100 acres
  • Shoreline: 1,063 miles
  • Average Depth: 15 feet
  • Max Depth: 57 feet
  • Surface Elevation: 556 feet
  • Location: North Alabama, spanning Limestone, Morgan, and Lawrence counties
  • Coordinates: 34.7003° N, 87.3828° 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

Types of Fish in Wheeler Lake

Wheeler Lake is home to a diverse range 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 near submerged structures such as fallen trees, docks, and vegetation. They’re most active during early morning and late evening.
  • Best Spots: Shallow coves, creek mouths, and around the dam.

Smallmouth Bass

  • Where to Find: Smallmouth bass prefer rocky areas and are often found near points and ledges.
  • Best Spots: Main lake points and rocky shorelines.

Spotted Bass

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


  • Where to Find: Crappie usually gather 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 structures.

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 at 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.

White Bass

  • Where to Find: These fish prefer open water and can often be found in schools.
  • Best Spots: Near the dam and in the main lake channels.

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

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

Largemouth, Smallmouth, 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 and White 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 Wheeler Lake Fishing

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

Near the Dam

The area around Wheeler 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 smallmouth 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 Wheeler Lake Fishing

Here are some tips to help you make the most of your fishing trip to Wheeler 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.

Wheeler Lake Fishing Reviews

Here are some rave reviews from anglers who’ve experienced the thrill of fishing at Wheeler Lake:

  1. John D. – “Wheeler Lake is my go-to fishing spot. The bass fishing here is phenomenal, and the scenery is just beautiful. I always have a great time!”
  2. Mary S. – “I’ve caught some of my biggest crappie at Wheeler Lake. The lake is well-maintained, and there are plenty of good spots to fish from shore.”
  3. Tom R. – “I love fishing for catfish at Wheeler Lake. The deep channels near the dam are perfect, and I’ve never been disappointed.”
  4. Lisa M. – “The variety of fish at Wheeler Lake is impressive. It’s a great place for a family fishing trip, with something for everyone.”
  5. Brian K. – “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 Wheeler Lake

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

1. Joe Wheeler State Park

  • 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. Point Mallard Campground

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

3. Decatur / Wheeler Lake KOA

  • Distance to Lake: 10 miles
  • Features: Scenic sites, hiking trails, and a swimming area.
  • Amenities: Water and electric hookups, restrooms, and showers.

4. Ditto Landing

  • Distance to Lake: 15 miles
  • Features: Lake access, boat rentals, and fishing docks.
  • Amenities: Full hookups, on-site restaurant, and swimming pool.

5. Mallard Creek Campground

  • Distance to Lake: 20 miles
  • Features: Lake access, picnic areas, and playgrounds.
  • Amenities: Water and electric hookups, restrooms, and showers.

Wheeler Lake Fishing Summary

Wheeler 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, Wheeler 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 Wheeler Lake Fishing

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

The best time to fish at Wheeler 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 Wheeler Lake?

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

3. Are there boat rentals available at Wheeler Lake?

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

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

Wheeler 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 Wheeler Lake. Happy fishing, and may you catch the big one!

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Directions To: Wheeler Lake Fishing Report Guide

Best Fishing Bait, Lures & Tackle

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