While many associate Lake Martin with summer vibes of swimsuits and flip flops, boating, and taking in all of the great watersports action, there are actually so many fun things to do during the fall at Lake Martin. Many of the locals will tell you that this is actually our favorite time of the year. There is just nothing quite like sitting by the lake with a slight chill in the air, a hot steamy coffee, and the sights of the trees as they begin to make their transformation and show off all of their vibrant colors.
While the water level does start dropping in the fall, that doesn’t happen all at once. Also, let me point out that the water level doesn’t go all of the way down and the lake is used year round. Each winter Alabama Power lowers it 7-10 feet, and it is a gradual process. It will start being lowered on October 15th this year, and will be at winter pool levels by December 31st. You can always keep up with the current water level here.
People can, and do, continue to enjoy the lake as it is going down. Anglers continue to enjoy the lake all winter long, and flock from all over while the water level is down as they come on a mission to catch the big one. Aside from fishing though, there are plenty of great activities to keep you busy during the fall at Lake Martin, and this is a prime time to visit and enjoy the peacefulness of the lake. Here are a few of our favorite things to do while visiting Lake Martin in the fall:
Go Camping (or Glamping)
What is not to love about sitting by a crackling campfire in your cozy hoodie, roasting marshmallows and eating smores? Those ooey gooey marshmallow treats just don’t taste the same during a hot Alabama summer, and fall is a super awesome time to enjoy them while camping (or glamping) at Lake Martin.
Wind Creek State Park is one of the largest state owned campgrounds in the country. They are located right on the shores of Lake Martin, and offer so many things to do right there on site. They also have boat rentals available on site, and even when the water level is lower, they have great boat ramps that allow you to get your vessel on the water. While you can tent camp or bring your RV, they also have cabins available.
If you like the idea of camping, but want all of the luxuries of a 5 star resort, you can also explore glamping (aka glamorous camping) at one of the Top 10 Glamping Resorts in the United States-The Destination. Their glamping tents are all themed, and are set in nature with the beauty of the woods and creek there on site. Each glamping tent also has hot tubs outside, which are always a treat to take a dip in with a glass of wine once the temps start to drop.
Take a Horseback Ride Through the Forest
The foliage of the forest during the fall is stunning, and our four legged equine friends enjoy it as much as us. The Stables at Russell Crossroads offers guided horseback rides through Russell Forest, and it is an amazing experience that you absolutely must check out when in our area. Rockin’ K also offers guided horseback riding through Wind Creek State Park.
Participate in the Lake Martin Hiking Challenge
During a hot Alabama summer, we love splashing around in the pristine waters of Lake Martin. However, once we hit the first slightest inkling of a fall chill, we flock to the woods to enjoy our amazing trails. With so much attention shown to the lake itself, our world class hiking trails are some of our best kept secrets. As a bonus, many of them also offer prime views of the lake.
The best way to explore our trails is by participating in the Lake Martin Hiking Challenge. This is a free activity you can do at your own pace, as you explore all of the great trails in the area including the CRATA trails, the trails at Russell Forest, the trails at Wind Creek State Park, the trail at Horseshoe Bend National Military Park, the Nature’s Way Preserve, and the trail at the Charles E. Bailey Sportplex. Once you complete at least a portion of all of the trails, you receive a Lake Martin Hiking Challenge patch and certificate of completion.
Go Bird Watching
As you are treking along those trails we just told you about, take a look to the sky, as many of those are also a part of the Piedmont Plateau Birding Trail. You don’t have to be an expert to be a birder around here. Lake Martin is a great place to get started birding, and you will be able to easily see may beautiful feathered creatures in our area during the fall. Fall is also a great time to spot Bald Eagles at Lake Martin. They are plentiful in our area, and if you just take the time to look and listen, you will be spotting them in no time!
Take a Boat Tour
Who says boating has to end on Labor Day? Not us! The fall is such a serene time to be on the water and see some of the changing colors. One of the easiest ways to just sit back and enjoy a day on the lake is by taking a boat tour. Lake Martin Tours operates boat tours year round, and they know all of the most scenic and well known spots to show you on the lake like Chimney Rock, Pirate Island, and more. They customize their tours and can even take you by boat to have lunch or dinner at one of our favorite lakeside dining establishments, Kowaliga Restaurant.
Check out a Fall Festival
We love having fun around here, and our area really loves celebrating the arrival of fall and the Christmas season. Every year, there are so many fall festivals and events for you to enjoy. Particularly in October, there are so many Halloween festivities happening around Lake Martin.
During the fall, or anytime of the year, you can check out the Lake Martin Event Calendar for all of the latest and greatest info for events happening in the area.
These are just a few of our favorite things to do at Lake Martin during the fall. It is one of our favorite times of the year, and we look forward to welcoming you! Maybe we can even enjoy a nice Pumpkin Spice Latte together at one of our local coffee shops! HAPPY FALL Y’ALL!