Black Warrior River

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Black Warrior River is a waterway in west-central Alabama in the southeastern United States. The river rises in the extreme southern edges of the Appalachian Highlands and flows 178 miles (286 km) to the Tombigbee River, of which the Black Warrior is the primary tributary. The river is named after the Mississippian paramount chief Tuskaloosa, whose name meant 'Black Warrior' in Muskogean. The Black Warrior is impounded along nearly its entire course by a series of locks and dams to form a chain of reservoirs that not only provide a path for an inland waterway, but also yield hydroelectric power, drinking water, and industrial water.

The river flows through the Black Warrior Basin, a region historically important for the extraction of coal and methane. The cities of Tuscaloosa and Northport grew at the historical head of navigation at the fall line between the Appalachian Highlands (specifically, the Cumberland Plateau) and the Gulf Coastal Plain. Birmingham, though not directly on the river, became a manufacturing hub and one of the largest cities in the South through use of the Black Warrior River in a small part for the transportation of goods. Birmingham actually grew up around a major junction of north-south and east-west railroads, just as Atlanta, Georgia, did.

Overall, the watershed of the Black Warrior has an area of 6,275 square miles (16,250 km²).

Scouting Adventures

  1. White Bluff Scout Reservation is located just off of Highway No. 43 north of Demopolis, AL. White Bluff is primitive scout camp and is available for use most of the year by all Scout units. The facilities include a large pavilion and boat landing on the shores of Black Warrior River.
  2. Demopolis State Wildlife Management Area Located in Sumter, Hale, Marengo and Greene Counties near Demopolis. 6,952 acres; waterfowl, big game, and small game.