Bull Shoals Lake offers diverse wildlife species, varied fisheries, open waters for sailing and boating, picnic shelters and swimming areas, boat ramps, and scuba opportunities. Visitors enjoy these and many other recreational opportunities. The reservoir lies in the beautiful Ozark Mountains of northern Arkansas and southern Missouri.
The wooded shoreline of Bull Shoals Lake is mostly undeveloped and protected by a buffer zone. The Army Corps of Engineers maintain several parks that offer, among other things, camping and picnic facilities, swimming areas, and boat ramps. Boat rentals, fuel, and other water-sport-related accommodations are available at multiple Bull Shoals Lake marinas.
Bull Shoals Lake is fed by the White River as it travels toward the Mississippi River. The lake is therefore the farthest downstream in a chain of four that order Beaver, Table Rock, Taneycomo, and Bull Shoals. The lakes are controlled by the Army Corps of Engineers and serve a dual purpose of flood control and recreational resources. Bull Shoals Lake fluctuates regularly, with a normal pool elevation of 654-feet above sea level.
Bull Shoals Dam was created to impound the White River by one of the largest concrete dams in the United States and the 5th largest dam in the world at its inception. Work on the dam began in 1947, was completed in 1951 and dedicated by President Harry S. Truman in 1952. At least seven small family cemeteries and 20 larger cemeteries were meticulously relocated to accommodate the new lake. Recent national events include Brostock 2010 and 2011, and the TBF Bass Federation and Bassmaster Elite Series Tournaments in 2012.