Bull Shoals State Park
In the Ozark Mountains of northern Arkansas, visitors discover one of the finest fishing and boating lakes in the nation - Bull Shoals. A dam placed across the White River in 1951 formed this 45,440-acre lake, whose 1,000 miles of rugged shoreline stretch between southern Missouri and northern Arkansas.At the southern edge of the lake, just below the dam, is 663-acre Bull Shoals State Park. Bull Shoals Lake and the White River together form a "fisherman's paradise." In addition to "lunker" bass, crappie and bream in the lake, the clear cold water of the river tempts both bank and float fishermen with its nationally-known fighting rainbow and brown trout.
But this area of the state offers even more than boating and fishing. Winding roads twist through the rugged mountains of the Ozarks where wild rushing streams and rivers, gushing springs and scenic trails can be found. From the dogwoods in spring to the glow of burnt orange leaves in fall, the beauty of this country captivates artists, photographers and scenery-conscious observers all year long. Located little more than a leisurely hour's drive south of Bull Shoals State Park is the famous Ozark Folk Center State Park, home of Ozark Mountain life, tradition and handicrafts. Visitors can view craftsmen demonstrating their skills which range from dulcimer-making to quilting. These craft items may be purchased at the Folk Center Gift Shop. From early spring to late fall, the sounds of mountain music can also be heard wafting from the Folk Center Crafts Area and Auditorium. Just a few miles from the Folk Center is Blanchard Springs Caverns, run by the US Forest Service. Tours of this magnificent "living" cave, where an underground river endlessly flows, are offered on a daily basis. Just 35 miles south of Bull Shoals, canoeists can find the nation's first National River, the beautiful, bluff-lined Buffalo National River.
Camping - Bull Shoals offers a variety of year-round camping experiences for park visitors. For those who wish a "primitive" experience, there are twenty tent sites near the river. Rent-A-Camp packages are available at the Visitor Center for people who wish to try camping but don't have their own equipment. This moderately-priced package includes a tent, cots, stove, and lantern. Campers wishing water and electrical hookups will find 85 campsites spread along the river bank. Modern bathhouses and a sanitary trailer dump station are conveniently located for all park visitors. The cold waters of the river provide natural "air-conditioned" comfort even on August's warmer nights.
Picnicking - A tree-shaded picnic area is located in the park above the dam on the lake. Playgrounds and group pavilions are located in the picnic area and in the campgrounds. The group pavilions may be reserved at a nominal fee for family get-togethers or group gatherings.
Trout Dock/Store - The trout dock provides up-to-the-minute fishing information, bait, tackle, snacks, ice, souvenirs and general merchandise. You can rent a canoe or boat and motor and enjoy the sparkling clear waters of the White River. Rainbow and brown trout are abundant and until you've experienced "hooking a lunker" you haven't fished. Come join us for an exciting, unique adventure on the White River. Other Facilities - Bull Shoals offers 2.5 miles of scenic hiking trails: one meanders near the lake, the other traverses the heavily wooded hills below the dam. Local Services - Shopping, service stations, hospitals and modern restaurants are only a few minutes' drive away in nearby towns.
Programs - A wide variety of programs are available daily April to October. Slide presentations, films, guided trail walks, nature demonstrations, lake cruises, guided johnboat and canoe trips on White River, trout fishing workshops, and special events and activities all help visitors to more fully enjoy and appreciate what Bull Shoals State Park has to offer. Program schedules are posted on all bulletin boards and at the park Visitor Center. Organized groups (i.e., school, scout, civic) may request special programs year-round by writing or calling the park in advance.
NOTE: Campers must register at the Visitor Center before occupying a campsite. Campers must have their camping unit with them at the time of registration. All sites are assigned; limited reservations available. Group pavilions can be reserved by calling or writing the park and must be reserved before being used (deposit required).
From US 62 at Flippin, take State Highway 178 just 10 miles north to the park just below Bull Shoals Dam; OR, travel 6 miles north of Mountain Home on Hwy. 5 and then go 8 miles west on State Hwy. 178 to the park.
For further information on park hours or fees, contact:
Bull Shoals State Park
Bull Shoals, AR 72619
Bull Shoals State Park, a place of memories and fun times. Give something back by becoming a park volunteer. Want to share your special skills with us? We are looking for special people willing to share their time. Please inquire at the park visitor center, or pick up a volunteer brochure and form.
For further information on Arkansas' other fine state parks, contact:
Arkansas State Parks
One Capitol Mall, 4A-900
Little Rock, AR 72201
All park services are provided on a nondiscriminatory basis. Arkansas State Parks is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication
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