Oak Mountain State Park - Birmingham, Alabama
|Oak Mountain State Park
A picnic table on top of Oak Mountain provides a
sweeping view of the historic Cahaba River valley
and the mountain country around Birmingham.
Waterfall at Oak Mountain
Peavine Falls, seen here,
was the destination of a trail
first opened by the C.C.C.
during the Great Depression.
Waterfall Photo by Lauren McCormick
Oak Mountain in Fall
Sunning colors of orange, red
and gold illuminate the
mountain in the fall.
Scenic Drive on the Mountain
A paved drive leads up to
picnic areas, hiking trails and
overlooks on top of Oak
Oak Mountain State Park & Peavine Falls - Pelham, Alabama
Scenery in the Birmingham Area
Sunset at Oak Mountain
The sun sets over the
peaceful waters of the lake at
Oak Mountain State Park.
Covering 9,940 acres on the outskirts of
Birmingham, Oak Mountain State Park in
Pelham is the largest state park in Alabama.
Located in historic Shelby County, the park is
one of the most beautiful spots in Alabama,
offering sweeping views of the surrounding
countryside, waterfalls, hiking trails, picnic
areas, overlooks, lakes, camping, golf,
horseback riding and much more. It was
established during the Great Depression as
a Works Progress Administration (W.P.A.)
project. The original work was done by the
Civilian Conservation Corps (C.C.C.).
Recreational projects such as Oak Mountain
State Park provided work for unemployed
Americans during the devastating days of the
Great Depression. Along with DeSoto State
Park and Cheaha State Park, Oak Mountain
is a tribute to the workers who first opened
trails and built roads to open the way into the
Alabama mountains for the hundreds of
thousands of picnickers, hikers, campers
and sightseers who followed.
One of the early C.C.C. trails led to Peavine
Falls, a beautiful waterfall formed by a wild
stream flowing from the top of the mountain.
Although the waterfall is not of the scale of
some of Alabama's larger waterfalls like
DeSoto Falls and Noccalula Falls, it is quite
Actually part of a 65-foot cascade, Peavine
falls takes its name from the fact that it twists
and turns "like a peavine." It can be reached
from a number of hiking trails in the park,
with the Green or Peavine Falls Trail being
the primary access. NOTE: The hike is
strenuous and the waterfall is often reduced
to a bare trickle during the dry months. Be
sure to check at the park entrance station to
see if the falls are flowing well before making
Please click here to see additional photos of
A paved road, open during daylight hours,
leads to the top of Oak Mountain where picnic
areas and overlooks provide sweeping views
of the Cahaba River valley and surrounding
country. The Cahaba is the longest free-
flowing river in Alabama and has been
named an Outstanding Water of the state. It
is rich in history and was once an important
landmark of the Creek Nation.
The hill and mountain country visible from the
top of the mountain is rich in history. This
was the location of Alabama's important
Confederate iron industry. Furnaces at
locations such as Tannehill Historical State
Park and Brierfield Ironworks Historical State
Park supplied iron for the manufacture of
cannon, warships and other war materials.
During the spring of 1865, Union General
James H. Wilson led an army into this region
in what is remembered as Wilson's Raid.
Severe damage was done to the ironworks
as skirmishing started with the forces of
Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest
near Montevallo, also in Shelby County.
Oak Mountain State Park is also a great
place to explore the natural history of
Alabama. The Alabama Wildlife Center is a
the state's oldest and largest animal rehab
facility and annually cares for more than
2,500 injured or sick wild animals. The
center is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
and is free with your park admission.
Nearby is the Treetop Nature Trail, a unique
elevated boardwalk that provides fascinating
views of birds such as great horned owls,
hawks, vultures and more, all of them native.
Please click here to learn more about Oak
Mountain State Park. The park is open daily
from 7 a.m. until one hour before sunset.
Camping and cabins are available. To reach
the park from Birmingham, take Interstate 65
to Exit 246 and follow the signs less than
1,000 feet to the park. Admission is $2 for
adults on weekdays and $3 on weekends
and $1 for senior citizens and kids ages 6-11.
|Copyright 2011 & 2014 by Dale Cox
All rights reserved.
Last Updated: March 7, 2014
See more Oak Mountain scenery!