Shades Creek

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Shades Creek is a 56.4 mile-long stream running southwest

through Shades Valley to the Cahaba River near the Shelby County/Bibb County line. Shades Creek starts near the Birmingham Race Course and runs through Irondale, Birmingham, Mountain Brook, Homewood, Hoover, and Bessemer.


From 1915 to the 1940s, Shades Creek was dammed at Columbiana Road, just downstream of Griffin Creek to form Edgewood Lake, a popular recreational resort during the 1920s and 30s.

In recent years, the Freshwater Land Trust has purchased several acres of land along the creek, primarily behind Wildwood Shopping Center and in Shannon for permanent conservation. The Land Trust is also working to remove Japanese privet, a highly invasive, non-native plant, along stretches of Shades Creek in Bessemer and to restore the creek to its original pathway. Other work along the creek includes Homewood's construction of the Shades Creek Greenway to connect Jemison Park in Mountain Brook with West Homewood Park.

Recently, biologists have found Cahaba shiners, goldline darters and coal shiners in Shades Creek near its outlet into the Cahaba, perhaps indicating that recent improvements to both streams are having a positive effect on aquatic life.

Sites along Shades Creek

Starting upstream (from the north):

Streets running alongside Shades Creek

Major roads crossing Shades Creek

Starting upstream (from the north):