Buttahatchee River

The Buttahatchee River is a tributary of the Tombigbee River, about 125 miles long, in northwestern Alabama and northeastern Mississippi in the United States. Via the Tombigbee River, it is part of the watershed of the Mobile River, which flows to the Gulf of Mexico.

The Buttahatchee River rises in northwestern Winston County, Alabama, near the town of Delmar, and flows generally westwardly through Marion County, where it collects a short tributary, the West Branch Buttahatchee River.

The river crisscrosses U.S. Highway 278 several times. At Hamilton, the river heads southwest and flows through the LaMarion Wildlife Management Area, and flows through Lamar County, Alabama and Monroe County, Mississippi; its lower reach is used to define part of the boundary between Monroe and Lowndes Counties. The Buttahatchee joins the Tombigbee near Columbus Air Force Base, 12 miles north-northwest of Columbus.

The name “Buttahatchee” is Choctaw for “sumac river”, from bati, “sumac”, and hahcha, “river.”

Visitors can view caves along the river which were home to the Choctaw Indians and the Cherokee Indians. Relics and artifacts have been found along the river for many years. Just south of Hamilton, along the river, there are historic Indian mounds which are suited for visiting during your travels along the Buttahatchee.

** Recreation: Buttahatchee is a very nice Class I river, a great Class I and II float for rec boats and canoes. There are some good rapids, good fishing and beautiful cliffs. East of Hamilton on 278 there are two bridges that cross the Buttahatchee. The best section (with most rapids) is between these bridges. Its best level is from 500 to about 1500 cfs. A couple of rapids might be pushing Class 2 at high water. It has cliffs and a landscape very similar to Bear Creek (west). There are many houses visible from the river. The water quality is better than average here, and the fishing is great. Like most places around here, it’s better in the winter, and tough to catch at the right level in the summer. It is very rocky and you’ll scrape all the way down at low water.

The first bridge outside Hamilton on 278 is the take out (with posted signs). The next bridge upstream on 278 is a newly built concrete bridge commonly known in the area as “burnout bridge” or the “new” bridge because a jet fuel tanker truck crashed on the bridge and burnt it up about 15 years ago. Between these two bridges are the best rapids. There are approximately four or five Class I rapids and many good shoals.

Going further east there is another bridge on 253 that will take you through historic Pearces Mill. There is an old mill dam that you have to portage around. Because of the dam, most of this section is flat water. There are a few small rapids as you approach the “new” bridge.

Many older folks float from Hamilton south to the old 78 or 43 bridges, but the old timers float it and fish it in flat bottom Jon boats, so I know that is flat too.

I will go down to 300 cfs. Between 300 and 500 cfs there is much scraping, and you have to pick your lines carefully to avoid the rocks. At 300 you are going to have to get out of the boat a couple of times, and at 500 you will not. The perfect level is 750 to 1000.

*** Fishing: Catfish, largemouth bass, crappie and bream are caught here.


*Courtesy: Wikipedia

**Courtesy: Alabama White Water

***Courtesy: Anglerweb.com

Aggieland Disc Golf Course

The Aggieland Disc Golf Course, located on the campus of the Hamilton Park & Recreation Department is the number 3 rated disc golf course in the State of Alabama. It is an 18 hole course filled with challenges for novices and experienced players alike. It features a good variety of terrain, with uphill, downhill, open and wooded holes, and beautifully maintained fairways. The course also features dual pin locations, as well as dual tees. (Amateur pads are concrete, pro tees are natural.) This is an ideal activity for families, which can be played at no charge. The course, which lies primarily in a beautiful wooded and hilly terrain area, hosts multiple tournaments throughout the year. To schedule a tournament, please contact officials with the Hamilton Park & Recreation Department.

510 10th Avenue SW
Hamilton, AL 35570
(205) 921-4371
Email: park@hamiltoncityal.org

Business office hours:

Monday through Thursday – 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Friday 7 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday – 1 p.m. – p.m.

Course hours:
Sunrise to sunset

Marion County Lake

Marion County Lake is a 37-acre lake located seven miles south of downtown Hamilton and only one mile south of I-22, just off U.S. Highway 43. This is a family-friendly site and no alcohol is allowed.

Birding Trail:

The Marion County Lake is an official site of the Alabama Birding Trail. Bring your binoculars and cameras and view the spectacular species who visit this lake year-round.


The lake is open sunrise to sunset as follows:
February 1 – June 30 – open 6 days a week, closed on Wednesday.
July 1 – November 30 – open 5 days, closed Tuesday and Wednesday.
December 1 – January 31 – closed.

To verify changes in hours or to make special requests, call the lake manager at (205) 921-7856.

Licenses and usage permits:

All Alabama state fishing laws apply to the Marion County Lake. All applicable licenses are required as are usage permits which can be purchased at the Marion County Lake.

Facilities and Parks:

Clean public restrooms and concessions are available, including a wide variety of fishing tackle, live and artificial baits, and other fishing supplies, as well as drinks and refreshments. An accessible fishing pier makes it easy to reach deeper water without using a boat. Boats are also available for rent; a launching ramp is available for anglers with their own boats. Boats may have an outboard motor attached, but anglers may not use the outboard motor, only the trolling motor.

Self-contained camping (for campers, but no hook-ups) and primitive camping are allowed (small fee).

Picnic pavilion is available (small fee).

Call for the lake manager for reservations.

Fishing Description:

Bass fishing is good year-round, with the biggest usually caught from February through April when they are near the bank. Bluegill (bream) and sunfish (shellcracker) are caught by bank and boat anglers from late spring through summer. Catfish are caught year-round, but the summer months are best. Crappie fishing is best from late February through April.

Types of Fish:

The lake is stocked with largemouth bass, blue catfish, channel catfish, sunfish, and crappie under programs through the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

The Marion County Lake is located in the heart of the Sam R. Murphy Wildlife Management Area, a top deer hunting destination in the state of Alabama.

Jerry Brown Pottery

If you love history, if you love art, and if you love something “different,” this will be the right place! Jerry Brown Pottery is the only known mule-powered pug mill still operating in the United States. Ninth-generation potter Jerry Brown and his mule, Blue, mix and grind the clay used to make his unique and one-of-a-kind pieces of pottery.

Jerry was awarded the National Heritage Fellowship and currently has five pieces of pottery on exhibit in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. The Alabama State Council on the Arts awarded the Alabama Folk Heritage Award to him in 2003. Also, in 2003, the Jerry Brown Arts Festival was created in his hometown of Hamilton, a juried arts festival which has been recognized as a Top 20 event in the Southeastern U.S. four of the last six years.

Jerry Brown Pottery
166 Boyett Drive
Hamilton, AL 35570
(205) 921-9483