Lee Hall Reservoir

Lee Hall is a 230-acre reservoir owned by the City of Newport News. The reservoir is located within the Newport News Park. Newport News Park has a total area of roughly 8,000 acres that makes it one of the largest municipal parks east of the Mississippi River. Lee Hall Reservoir is located a few miles to the west of Newport News and is easily visible from Interstate 64 and State Route 143. Both roads have bridges that cross the reservoir. The bridges of these two roads divide the upper and middle basins of the reservoir. The middle and lower basins are connected by pipe and fishing is prohibited from the lower basin. A water treatment plant draws from the lower basin.

Newport News park offers a variety of recreational activities for the family. Anglers can try their luck for the variety of fish species that are present in Lee Hall Reservoir. A total of 15 fish species were collected during the electrofishing sample of 2005. The major species of interest to most anglers are the largemouth bass, black crappie, chain pickerel, bluegill, yellow perch, pumpkinseed and redear sunfish.

Maps & Directions

The lake is located off Route 143, via the Lee Hall (Route 143) or Fort Eustis Blvd. (Route 105) exits off I-64. For more information call the Newport News Department of Parks and Recreation, (757) 886-7912. Map

Fishing Opportunities

The electrofishing survey of 2005 indicated that numbers of largemouth bass are not very abundant in Lee Hall Reservoir. Although the catch rate of largemouth bass was rather low in comparison to other area waters, 50% of the bass sample was greater than 12 inches in length. The majority of bass were collected from the flats of the middle basin off of I-64. This shallow area with abundant cover is attractive to bass in search of spawning areas. The largest bass collected measured 20 inches and weighed 4.3 pounds.

The electrofishing survey produced high numbers of bluegill and yellow perch. The bluegill and yellow perch populations are dominated by an abundance fish in the 3 – 6 inch range. The sample collected only 18 yellow perch in the 7 – 8 inch range. The sample also revealed the presence of numerous pumpkinseed and redear sunfish with the majority of these fish less than 6 inches in length.

The spring 2005 trap net surveys revealed fair numbers of black crappie present in the upper reaches of the reservoir. A high percentage of the sample consisted of black crappies in the 7 – 11 inch range. The largest black crappie measured an impressive 15.23 inches and weighed 2.06 pounds.

The trap net surveys revealed fair numbers of white perch present. The majority of the white perch collected were within the 9 – 11 inch range. Lee Hall Reservoir has produced some quality chain pickerel over the years. Although our sampling did not produce any large chain pickerel, anglers were still successful in catching and reporting 7 citation-sized chain pickerel in 2005.

Biologist Reports

Regulations

  1. Anglers need to purchase the daily or yearly fishing permit before fishing on Lee Hall Reservoir. The campground office will provide the necessary permits.
  2. Fishing hours are set by the park hours and vary throughout the year.
  3. Outboard engines are prohibited. Electric motors can be used.
  4. Statewide regulations apply to all fish species.

Facilities

Lee Hall is another excellent family spot, providing playgrounds, campgrounds, picnic shelters, nature trails, boat ramps, boat rentals, and some shore fishing. Newport News Park rents boats from two locations on the reservoir. Boats can be rented year round from the campsite office which is located off of Route 143 to the west of the main entrance. Boats can also be rented on weekends and holidays during the summer from the Lee Hall Fishing Area in the middle of the park. Boat rental/day, per licensed fisherman is $4.00 plus tax. Boat rental after 3PM is $3 plus tax per fisherman. Senior rates are available.

Private boats can be launched from both of these areas. A daily fee of $4 is required to launch private boats, or an annual permit may be purchased for $40. Gasoline-powered outboards are prohibited. Anglers are required to purchase a daily fishing permit for $1.50 if they plan on fishing from the pier and the adjacent shoreline area. Anglers are also required to have a valid VA state fishing license to fish Lee Hall Reservoir. An access area located at the Route 143 bridge allows anglers to launch private boats for easier access to the middle basin. Additional information on boat rentals can be obtained by calling the Newport News Department of Parks and Recreation at (757) 886-7912.

News

Department fisheries biologist conducted electrofishing and trap net surveys on Lee Hall Reservoir during the spring of 2005. Collected data revealed the presence of abundant sunfish and yellow perch populations. The historical sample sites did not produce high numbers of largemouth bass. The size structure of the limited bass sample was good with a high percentage of the bass measured over 15 inches in length. Trap net surveys showed the majority of the black crappie population to be in the 7 – 11 inch range with the largest crappie measured at 15.23 inches and 2.06 pounds. This crappie shows that Lee Hall Reservoir has the potential to produce citation-sized black crappies. Age and growth analysis showed that the crappies were growing well with fish reaching 10 inches in 3 years of growth.

Lee Hall reservoir produced a total of 9 reported fish citations in 2005. Anglers caught 7 citation-sized chain pickerel, 1 citation largemouth bass and 1 black crappie citation.

More Information

For further information please contact:

Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
3801 John Tyler Hwy.
Charles City, VA 23030

Phone: (804) 829-6580, Ext. 129