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Phil Lilley
Phil Lilley

Bull Shoals Overview

Bull Shoals begins where Taneycomo ends and flows southeastwardly from Forsyth into Arkansas. Bull Shoals Dam, the fifth largest concrete dam in the United States, is located about seven miles north of Cotter, Arkansas. The lake's shoreline has stayed relatively undeveloped and features beautiful steep bluffs and rock ledges.

Its public accesses on the lake are far and few between which makes it less crowded than many lakes.  There's only a couple of marinas on the Missouri upper lake, and these businesses cater to anglers only; thus, you don't see many jet skies or speed boats on the lake.  It's much more quiet than its neighbor Table Rock Lake.

http://www.ozarkanglers.com/bull-shoals/files/2011/10/powersite_pic.jpegMap of Bull Shoals (Corp)

Park Facilities (Corp)

Boat Ramps

Twenty-two launch ramps provide access to those wishing to enjoy a day on the lake. Some ramps require a day-use fee including River Run, Beaver Creek, Buck Creek, Theodosia, Pontiac, Oakland/Ozark Isle, Lakeview, Dam Site, Highway 125, Lead Hill, and Tucker Hollow. On these ramps, users may pay a $3 daily fee or purchase a $30 annual pass. Free launching ramps are located at Hwy K, Welcome Ridge, Bull Shoals, Rancho Village/CR 15, CCC, Spring Creek, and Fairview access points.

http://www.ozarkanglers.com/bull-shoals/files/2011/10/vince_yellow_perch_350.jpgState Record Fish on Bull Shoals:

  • Largemouth Bass - Thirteen pounds, 14 ounces, caught April 21, 1961, by  Marvin Russell Bushong  of Gainesville, MO.
  • Stripped Bass - Sixty pounds, nine ounces, caught June 18, 2011, by  James B. Cunningham of Fordland, MO.
  • Longnose Gar - Twenty-seven pounds even, caught May 17, 1999, Dale Davis of  Kirbyville, MO.
  • Yellow perch - One pound,  11 ounces, caught May 3, 2009, by  Vince G. Elfrink of Walnut Shade, MO.
  • Walleye - Twenty-0ne pounds, 1 ounce, caught March 26, 1988 by Gerry H. Partlow, Linncus, MO.


MDC Fish Habitat/Structure Interactive Map

Missouri Fishing Regulations and Permits

Bass, black (largemouth), smallmouth- 15-inch length limit, and spotted bass (kentuckies) - 12-inch length limit, 6 daily, 12 possession.

Statewide season on bass in rivers and streams is open from the 4th Saturday of May till the last day in February annually.

White bass, striper, hybrid bass- 15 total daily (only 4- 18 inches or longer can be kept in a daily limit), 30 possession.

Rock bass (goggleye) - no length limit, 15 daily, 30 possession.

Crappie, white or black - 10-inch length limit, 15 daily, 30 possession.

Bluegill - no limit

Catfish - no length limit, 10 daily (only 5 can be flatheads in a daily limit), 20 possession.

*Below Truman dam - 4 daily (channel, blue and flathead) and only 1 may be more than 24 inches in total length.

**Walleye - 18 inch minimum length, 4 daily, 8 possession.

**seasons- Throughout the year, except that from February 20 through April 14 walleye and sauger may be taken and possessed only between 6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. central standard time (CST) in the Swan Creek Arm of Bull Shoals Lake above Highway 160 bridge and in the unimpounded portions of all streams except the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. Walleye and sauger may not be possessed on waters or banks thereof during closed seasons or closed hours.

Spoonbill - 2 daily between March 15 and April 30. Length - 34 inches between the eye to the fork of the tail minimum.

Non-Game fish - Snagging, snaring and grabbing are allowed from 3/15 - 4/30 only.

Method -

Trotlines/limblines only below highway 76 bridge below Powersite Dam. Rod and reel otherwise.

Special Regulations Pertaining to Bull Shoals:


Black bass—15” minimum length limit on largemouth and smallmouth bass; 12” minimum length limit on spotted bass

Catfish (channel, blue and flathead)—10 fish daily limit, combined total of these three species

Crappie—10” minimum length limit; 15 fish daily limit

On the lake and its tributaries:

Walleye and sauger—18” minimum length limit

In the Swan Creek Arm above U.S. Highway 160:

From Feb. 20 through April 14, walleye and sauger may be taken and possessed only between 1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset.

From Powersite Dam to Highway 76:

Trotlines, throwlines and limb lines are prohibited.

Fishing Licenses -


  • Missouri Resident Annual License is $12
  • Non-resident annual license is $49
  • Trout permits are only sold annually, and they are $10 for adults and $5 for kids under 16 years of age
  • All Missouri licenses and permits expire on March 1
  • Non-resident One Day - $8
  • Non-resident Three Day - $24
  • Missouri Residents over age 65 only need a trout permit $10

Buy Missouri Fishing Licenses Online!

Missouri Wildlife Code

Arkansas Regulations and Fishing Permits

Bass, black (largemouth), smallmouth- 15-inch length limit, and spotted bass (kentuckies) - 12-inch length limit, 6 daily, 12 possession.

White bass - 15 total daily, 30 possession.

Striped and hybrid bass combined - 3 daily, 6 possession.

Rock bass (goggleye) - no length limit, 10 daily, 20 possession.

Crappie, white or black - 10-inch length limit, 15 daily, 30 possession.

Bluegill - 50 daily.

Catfish - no length limit, 10 daily, 20 possession.

Walleye - 18 inch minimum length, 4 daily, 8 possession.

Trout - (all rainbow, brown, cutthroat, lake and brook combined per day) - 5 daily, 10 possession

Fishing Licenses -

Residents - those fishing of the ages of 16 and older and 65 are required to have on their person a valid Arkansas fishing license. Those 65 and older do not need a fishing license.

Proof of residency - Valid Arkansas Drivers License.

Non-residents - those fishing of the ages of 16 and older are required to have on their person a valid Arkansas fishing license.

For Missouri & Arkansas residents only - a special border permit can be purchased to allow fishing in both Missouri and Arkansas without purchasing an out-of-state license.


Resident - $10.50 annual
Resident 3-Day - $6.50
Resident trout stamp - $5.00
Border Permit - $10
Non-resident - $40 annual
Non-resident 3-day - $11.00
Non-resident 7-day - $17.00
Non-resident 14-day - $22.00
Non-resident trout stamp - $12.00

Click Here for AFG's Permit Site

Annual licenses run from the day of purchase for the next year (365 days)


Theodosia Marina

In June of 1952, the Cook family began making plans for their new business in the beautiful Ozark mountains of south-central Missouri. Those plans included a small dock, cafe and motel on the new lake, Bull Shoals. Four generations later we are a total marina-resort complex, boasting a modern motel, spacious cottages, lodges, an RV and camping park, a full service marina, a marine sales and service department, and a great family-style restaurant. Lighted tennis/basketball courts, a large outdoor pool, a multi-use recreation building, and wet or dry boat storage facilities round out our complex.



Bull ShoalsLake Boat Dock

Wave Runner & Boat Rentals... Scuba Rentals... Guided Lake & River Fishing Trips... Full Marine Service... Houseboat Rentals... On-Site Convenience Store & Bait/Tackle Shop... Resort With Great Lake Views... Boat Stall Rentals... New & Pre-Owned Boat Sales... Camping & RV Sites...



Lakeview Cover Marina

Lakeview Cove Marina provides all the necessities to enhance your time on the water whether your interest is fishing or boating. We offer overnight and yearly facilities for your boat in one of our new, covered docks or you can cruise the lake in one of our pontoons. The Lakeview Cove Marina store offers a one stop shop for all your boating, fishing, swimming, picnic and camping supplies.



Pontiac Cove Marina

Welcome to Pontiac Cove Marina on beautiful Bull Shoals Lake. PCM is a family-owned and operated marina situated on the Missouri side of the Missouri-Arkansas border. The marina offers long-term and short-term slip rentals, pontoon and fishing boat rentals, plus an accessible fuel dock that can accommodate at least three boats at a time. Other amenities include a scuba air fill station, convenience store and gift shop offering soda, beer, snacks, boating accessories, fishing tackle and bait, Missouri fishing licenses, water toys and souvenirs.



Oakland Marina

Oakland Marina and Ozark Isle Campgrounds await you for fabulous fishing, boating, and sight-seeing in the scenic Arkansas Ozarks. No matter when you travel, the mild, four-season climate of the Ozarks allows for outdoor activities. Fishing is year-round, with no closed season.



Highway 125 Marina

Hwy 125 Marina is located near the Peel ferry in north central arkansas on Bull Shoals Lake and offer house boat rentals, pontoon, wakeboard, and other fishing boats.


Buck Creek Marina

We have one of the newest and largest bait, tackle and watersports equipment shop on Bull Shoals Lake. We have everything you need for a great day on the lake!



K Dock Marina

Welcome to K Dock Marina! We are a full service marina located on the Missouri side of beautiful Bull Shoals Lake. You will find us on the North West portion of the lake only 8 miles from Branson!  Located at 727 Warren Rd, Kirbyville, MO  65679.  Our lake location is at marker 38.  K Dock offers yearly and overnight boat slip rentals ($15), as well as pontoon rentals.  The marina fuel docks are accommodating for boats of any size.  We offer Non - Ethanol Marine Fuel.  Our full service Marina features an on-site convenience store offering food, soda, bagged ice, snacks, ice cream, Cold Beer, propane exchange, tackle and live bait. K Dock also offers a complimentary “picnic” area located on the water to enjoy your lunch or favorite ice cream with your family.



Beaver Creek Marina

Come and discover nationally renowned fishing on Bull Shoals Lake. Whether you seek the elusive Large Mouth Bass or prefer the thrill of fighting Small Mouth Bass, Crappie or Walleye, we offer the prime location to test your skill.  Bring your RV, pop-up or tent and spend your vacation within walking distance of the marina in the beautiful Beaver Creek Park Campground. 


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