Bull Shoals Dam, completed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1951, is the fifth largest concrete dam in the United States. I love the view as you drive over it – the deep, shimmering waters of Bull Shoals Lake on one side and the drop off to the scenic White River below.
Bull Shoals Lake totals about 45,500 surface acres, almost 1,000 miles of rugged shoreline, and 60,000 acres of public land. It’s prime for outdoor water recreation. Summer fun is filled with water skiing, knee boarding, wakeboarding, tubing, swimming and more. Numerous marinas, attractions, lodging and dining options can be found throughout the area. More than 20 parks developed through the cooperative efforts of local, state and federal agencies are located on the lakeshore.
The lake is also an excellent fishery. In May 2012, Bassmaster Magazine named it one of the country’s Top 100 Bass Lakes. You can hook largemouth bass, spotted bass, white bass, crappie, channel cat, bream and walleye.
Below the dam is another nationally renowned fishery – the cold waters of the White River full of rainbow, brown, and cutthroat trout. Resorts and trout docks offering guide services can be found along the banks. Wade fishing, or fishing in a johnboat is popular. Also great to visit is a large federal fish hatchery that assures a continuous stocking of the river.
Lake Norfork is just to the east, and below Norfork Dam is the north fork of the White River.