Lake Dannelly is a 17,200 acre reservoir on the Alabama River.  It was impounded in 1969 when the Miller's Ferry Lock and Dam was constructed by the Corps of Engineers.  The reservoir lies between Claiborne Lake and the Jones Bluff Dam and stretches through Wilcox and Dallas counties.  The reservoir is perhaps better known as "Miller's Ferry Lake."

     Lake Dannelly is one of the best kept secrets in Alabama.  Bass, crappie, and catfish fishing is outstanding here.  Anglers also have the opportunity to catch striped bass and hybrids.  

                       Miller's Ferry Lock & Dam

     Backwater areas have ample stands of timber that were flooded during impoundment.  The fertile Alabama River nourishes this productive reservoir, and anglers often fill their creels.  The many creeks draining into the main reservoir help to create the ideal habitat for a fisherman's paradise.       

     The dominant species of crappie in Dannelly Reservoir is the white crappie.  Current catches of 1 to 2-pound fish are common, with the average size of one pound.  Abundant standing timber, logjams, and treetops in the lake provide excellent habitat for crappie. 

     During the spring crappie is the number one fish sought in Miller's Ferry.  Crappie fishing peaks during the spawning season when the fish congregate in shallow water during April as water temperature approaches 65 degrees Fahrenheit.  Crappie fishing peaks again in October and November.  In the fall, crappie can be found in sloughs around fallen trees and brush tops.  Live shiners and "tuffy" minnows are the preferred crappie bait, but anglers with small jigs can also be successful.  Some of the hot spots for crappie are Shell Creek, Gee's Bend, Chilatchee Creek, Bogue Chitto Creek, and Pine Barren Creek.

     Excellent bass fishing is also found on Lake Dannelly.  A once closely held secret by local fisherman is no longer such a secret anymore.  Over the past several years numerous regional outdoors publications have touted Lake Dannelly's waters as a prime destination for bass fishermen.  The lake is known for producing large numbers of bass in the 2 to 4-pound range, including the occasional "lunker." 


     April, May, and June are the favorite months for bass fishing, with November the best time in the fall.  Underwater structures are easy to locate and usually hold fish.  Standing timber, numerous creeks, and 516 miles of shoreline provide excellent habitat for largemouth bass.  

     During spring the main reservoir is usually muddy until mid-May, so most anglers fish the treetops and logjams in the backwaters and creeks where the water stays fairly clear.  Normally, water level fluctuation is minimal, even during periods of heavy flow.  In June, the bass move into deeper water where they are taken along drop-offs, ledges, creek channels, and points at depths of 15 to 30 feet.  For anglers willing to fish in early morning, top-water lures are productive around weed beds before the sun gets too high.
     Below Miller's Ferry Dam, anglers enjoy what may be the best tailwater fishing in southwest Alabama.  Abundant populations of blue and channel catfish are found in the tailwater.  Below the dam, most serious catfishermen use cut shad for bait.  Tailwater fishing is best during May and June but excellent catches of catfish and other species are taken in the tailwaters year-round.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has provided a fishing deck below the dam for access to the tailwater.