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Old 09-21-2006, 09:50 AM
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justfishing justfishing is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Alabama
Posts: 147
Default Re: Sipsey Trout - 9/15

Hey 14,

The Sipsey is a tailwater fishery in central Alabama, about 45 minutes north of Birmingham off I-65. The dam is the largest earthen dam in the eastern US and holds Smith lake. This lake in some spots is over 300 feet deep, so the water coming out of the bottom is cold enough to support trout.

"The deep waters leaving Smith Lake provide a fishery unique within Alabama. The Sipsey Fork of the Black Warrior River below Lewis Smith Dam remains in the fifty to sixty-five degree range all year. These temperatures are too cold for native populations to thrive, but the cold water provides an opportunity for anglers interested in rainbow trout to test their skills. The tailwaters also provide a seasonal skipjack herring fishery (March-April) and a fishery for both large "saltwater" striped bass and white bass / striped bass hybrids (also known as wipers). The Alabama record hybrid striped bass came from the Smith Lake tailwaters.

Rainbow trout are stocked by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service through a cooperative agreement with the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries. The Dale Hollow Fish Hatchery usually stocks 3,000 to 3,500 rainbow trout every sixty days, with an extra load in the spring. 3,000 trout were released July 13, 2006. Trout are usually stock the second or third week of January, March, April, May, July, September, and November. Trout are released at the dam and slowly move downstream."

Many anglers fish the Sipsey Fork so they can fly fish for trout. These trout will often rise to very small midges. Fly fishers use light rods usually 5 Weight or smaller 8-foot or longer in length. The flies change seasonally and can be as big as a #10 Woolly Bugger and as small as a #24 CDC Caddis Midge.

For access on the east side of the Sipsey Fork, a paved road runs north off Hwy 69. For 2 miles to the Birmingham water pumping station, this road has many access points to the river. To fish above the pumping station, dirt road can be hiked by walking around the pumping station. Anglers need waders with felt sole boots because of the water temperature and the slick algae-covered rocks. This area is close to the dam, and the water may rise very quickly without warning. Anglers can also fish at the dam from the west side of the river with access provided by Alabama Power Company. Boat access is available downstream off County Road 22 near the town of Sipsey.

Probably more than you wanted to know.
Here's a link for more info.


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