Eagle Watch Lake Tours at Lake Ouachita State Park

Lake Ouachita provides prime habitat for wintering bald eagles. They favor the Ouachitas and Ozarks due to their favorable habitat. You might not spot one based on sound recognition though, as the infamous ‘cry’ you hear on movies is most likely a red-tailed hawk. Eagles make a high-pitched chirping sound.


Eagles, which are unique to North America, begin to arrive in Arkansas as early as mid-October and stay all winter long, departing around February and as late as mid-March. Over 1,700 eagles may winter here depending on weather conditions. Wintering eagles favor the Ouachitas and Ozarks due to their favorable habitat. You might not spot one based on sound recognition though, as the infamous ‘cry’ you hear on television and movies is most likely from a red-tailed hawk. Eagles make a wimpy high pitched chirping sound.

Once endangered in all of the lower 48 states, bald eagles, which became the national emblem of the United States in 1782, came dangerously close to extinction. However, due to increased awareness, protective legislation and widespread conservation efforts over the past 50 years, the population is making a remarkable comeback, and eagle watching is becoming a popular pastime for nature lovers across the country.

Lake Ouachita provides prime habitat for wintering bald eagles. Through February, park interpreters at Lake Ouachita State Park   give guided lake tours (via a covered barge) to try to spot eagles in the wild. Be sure to dress for the weather and bring your camera and binoculars if you have them since you will be scanning the shorelines of Lake Ouachita.  Of note, be sure to call the park before you go to get details on what exact days/times the tours take place on the weekend. According to park interpreter Susan Adkins, the tours  “will run now through February on most Saturdays, but not all of them.  It’s best to call the park to get tour dates and times.  For groups of 12 or more, I can also schedule private Eagle Watch Tours.”  Tours depart from the park marina. The cost is $9 for adults, $5 for kids (6-12 years old) and those under 6 years old get in free.  You can make reservations and purchase tickets at the visitor center. Lake Ouachita State Park is located at 5451 Mountain Pine Road. For more details call the park at 501-767-9366.

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Posted in Eagle Watching, Kids, Outdoors, State Park, Travel Arkansas
2 comments on “Eagle Watch Lake Tours at Lake Ouachita State Park
  1. G Estes says:

    We took our family for an Eagle Watch Tour from Mt. Harbour years ago and it was the best time on the lake we have ever had. The eagles were there and put on a good show for us!! Have always wanted to come back. Maybe this is the year we do.

  2. Zoie Clift says:

    I am very happy to hear you enjoyed your eagle tour experience!

1 Pings/Trackbacks for "Eagle Watch Lake Tours at Lake Ouachita State Park"
  1. [...] Ouachita has been recorded as the site for some 1700 eagles during the wintertime (stats from Travel Arkansas blog). Many choose to stay until as late as mid-February or early March – depending on [...]

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