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Lake Information for Bull Shoals Lake


Bull Shoals Lake is a man-made lake in the Ozark Mountains of northern Arkansas and southern Missouri. It has hundreds of miles of lake arms and coves perfect for boating, water sports, swimming, and fishing. Nineteen developed parks around the shoreline provide campgrounds, boat launches, swim areas, and marinas.

Bull Shoals Lake was created by one of the largest concrete dams in the United States. Work on the dam began in 1947, was completed in 1951 and dedicated by President Truman in 1952. At least seven small family cemeteries and 20 larger cemeteries were meticulously relocated to accommodate the new lake.

Bull Shoals Lake is an impoundment of the White River. Bull Shoals is the farthest lake downstream in a chain of four man-made lakes that include (from upstream to downstream) Beaver Lake, Table Rock Lake and Lake Taneycomo. The lake is controlled by the Army Corps of Engineers and has the primary purpose of flood control. The level of the lake fluctuates regularly with a normal pool level elevation of 654 feet above sea level, which is locally known as powerpool. However, the lake regularly fluctuates between an elevation of 630 to 680 feet. The dam can retain water in the lake to a maximum elevation of 695 feet. Bull Shoals Lake covers 45,000 acres (182 km²) with a 700 mile (1,120 km) shoreline at powerpool to more than 70,000 acres (284 km²)with a 1,000 mile (1,600 km) shoreline at 690 feet. The bottom of the lake consists of bedrock with very limited vegetation. The shoreline is heavily forested.

Fishing Description: 

Bull Shoals enjoys wide recognition as a prime fishery. Holding several Arkansas and Missouri state records, the lake’s reputation is well justified. Opportunities abound for many species, ranging from pan fish to walleye. A fish attractor program to improve habitat and enhance fishing success has resulted in over 450 attractors being placed in Bull Shoals. A map showing their location is available from the Visitor Information Center.

The White River, downstream of Bull Shoals Dam, is the premier trout fishery in the central United States and has yielded Arkansas state records for cutthroat and rainbow trout. Floating down the river in an Ozark johnboat and fishing for brown, brook, cutthroat, and rainbow trout is an experience found nowhere else.

Blue Catfish
Brook Trout
Brown Trout
Channel Catfish
Largemouth Bass
Rainbow Trout
Smallmouth Bass
Spotted Bass
Striped Bass
White Bass
Optional Information
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Bull Shoals Lake
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Businesses Located Nearby

Bait & Tackle

    Big Red's Bait & Tackle
  • 6173 Highway 178 W - Lakeview, AR
  • (870) 431-5806
    Lead Hill Bait & Tackle
  • 100 Highway 7 - Lead Hill, AR
  • (870) 436-5757
    Riverside Bait & Tackle
  • 18330 N Highway 7, #A - Lead Hill, AR
  • (870) 436-3853

Boat Rental

Vacation Rental

Bar and Restaurant

    Donovans Hillbilly Inn & Family Restaurant
  • 1166 W 76 Country Blvd - Branson, MO
  • (417) 334-6644
    Rocky's Italian Restaurant
  • 120 N Sycamore St - Branson, MO
  • (417) 335-4765

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