The Tallapoosa is One of GA’s Top 14 Watersheds but Flows Just 45 Miles in the State

tallapoosa watershed
The Tallapoosa River. Photo by Beth Jones

The Tallapoosa watershed is one of Georgia’s 14 major watersheds. The Tallapoosa River begins about 40 miles west of Atlanta near the Haralson / Paulding county line and flows southwesterly through hilly terrain for about 45 miles in Georgia before entering Alabama. It merges with the Coosa River 18 miles northeast of Montgomery to form the Alabama River; the Alabama River merges with the Tombigbee north of Mobile to form the Mobile River, which flows into the Gulf of Mexico at Mobile Bay. Read a Tallapoosa River Paddling Guide

See all of Georgia’s 14 Major Watersheds

Altamaha, Chattahoochee, Coosa, Flint, Ochlockonee, Ocmulgee, Oconee, Ogeechee, Satilla, Savannah, St Marys, Suwannee, Tallapoosa, Tennessee

The Tallapoosa Watershed System

The Tallapoosa drains about 720 square miles in Georgia. From the Georgia state line, the Tallapoosa flows about 213 miles in Alabama to merge with the Coosa River about 18 miles northeast of Montgomery and become the Alabama River. The Alabama River flows 314 miles southwest to join the Tombigbee River and become the Mobile River. The Mobile River flows 45 miles south to enter the Gulf of Mexico at Mobile Bay. Total distance from the headwaters of the Tallapoosa to Mobile Bay is about 617 miles.

How the Tallapoosa River Got Its Name

The exact meaning of this Creek Indian word is unknown, but it may have come from the Choctaw word tali, meaning rock, and pushi, meaning crushed or pulverized.

Tallapoosa Watershed Experiences

Listed below are locations where you can see or experience the Tallapoosa Watershed.

Georgia State Parks

This West Georgia park is known for having the largest sand swimming beach of any Georgia state park and it appeals to water lovers looking for boating and fishing opportunities. The park is named for a local businessman who operated the property as a private park from 1954 until 1971.

The Tallapoosa Watershed Connection: The outflow from the park’s lakes travels down Camp Creek to the Little Tallapoosa River. The Little Tallapoosa merges with the Tallapoosa River at Lake Wedowee in Alabama. The Tallapoosa joins the Coosa near Montgomery to form the Alabama River. When the Alabama meets the Tombigbee, it becomes the Mobile River and flows into the Gulf of Mexico at Mobile Bay.

Brown's Guide
About Brown's Guide 277 Articles

Brown’s Guides is a website about the top outdoor experiences in America and about the professional outfitters and guides who know them best. BG selects guides and outfitters located in or in close proximity to the Natural Areas they provide activities in. These outfitters know the areas and care about protecting and preserving them in a way that outfitters based in other states never can. Hiking, biking, sea kayaking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, and over 100 other outdoor activities are indexed on the site. BG has been doing this type of thing since 1972 in books, magazines, maps and on the Internet.

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