Degray Lake Resort State Park is Arkansas' only resort state park....meaning, it offers most of your vacation wants, such as food, drink, lodging, sports, entertainment, and shopping, on the premises. It's located here....about 15 minutes off Interstate-30 between Arkadelphia and Hot Springs
The lake was originally inhabited by the Caddo Indians and was named for a French fur-trapper in the late 1700's. Construction on the dam began in 1963 and took 9 years at a cost of over 63 million dollars. The turbines generate electricity for parts of Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma through the southwest power grid. Fun Fact! One of the turbines is reversible, so if too much water is let through, they can reverse it and pump water back into the lake.
Upon completion of the dam, we were told by a park interpreter it took a year and a half for the lake to fill and it is 200 feet deep at its deepest point. The lake covers 13,800 acres and the 938 acre state park is located in this area...
Degray Lake Resort State Park includes 113 campsites, yurts and a lodge and convention center overlooking the lake. Make sure you stop by the lobby fireplace to see the carved mantel, stay for lunch at the Shoreline Restaurant or enjoy some relaxation at the day-spa.
Pick up Arkansas and Degray Lake gifts at the lodge gift shop! Take a dip in the pool, relax in the hot-tub or rent a bike and take a whimsical ride around the park. Head down to the full-service marina for rental fishing boats, party barges, canoes, kayaks and fishing supplies, including bait.
Only two state parks in Arkansas offer a golf course and Degray Lake is one of them! The park offers an 18-hole, par 72 championship golf course with a driving range and putting green. The pro shop can fix you up with gear, snacks and a golf cart for all day play!
Not into golf? That's ok, there's also horse-back-riding, tennis, basketball, swim beaches and picnic areas, disc golf, pavilions for large groups, playgrounds and hiking! Whew!!
Now, let's talk about trails...
There are four trails to choose from.
The 1 mile Island Trail
The ¾ mile Green Heron Trail...perfect for bird watchers
The quarter mile Saginaw Historic Trail which covers an old railroad bed
And the half mile Chickadee Trail
As you can see, there's a lot to do at Degray!! But one of our favorite things happens in the off-season.Did you know Degray Lake is one of the best places to see bald eagles in Arkansas? Exact numbers aren't known, but it's estimated there are anywhere from 15-60 eagles frequenting the area in the wintermonths and some may stay year-round. The park puts on an annual program the last weekend of January called Eagles Et Cetera that includes a live falconry hunt, owl prowl, a birds of prey show and eagle watch boat tours! The eagle watch tours are seasonal and continue through the winter months depending on migration.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this look into Degray Lake Resort State Park and we encourage you to get out and experience The Natural State! For more information on the park, visit ArkansasStateParks.com
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