Lake Atkins is accessible from roads off Arkansas Highways 105 and 324. These roads are reached by turning south at Exit 94 off Interstate 40 at Atkins. Highway signs direct travelers to the lake.
Handicapped-accessible fishing piers are available.
- Aquatic Vegetation
Water willow, pondweed, slimy lily, coontail
- Area Specific Regulations
- Crappie shorter than 10 inches must be released immediately.
- Handicapped-accessible fishing piers are available.
- Use of common carp as bait is prohibited.
- Read special rules for AGFC lakes and access areas.
- Largemouth bass from 16 inches to 21 inches must be released immediately.
- Largemouth bass daily limit is 10, of which 1 may be over 21 inches.
Note: It is unlawful to possess filleted fish or fish with head and tail removed while fishing from shore or boat or transporting fish by boat on water bodies with length/slot limits.
Measure all fish from the tip of the lower jaw to the tip of the tail with the fish laid flat on ruler, mouth closed and tail lobes pressed together.
- Area Type
- Bottom Features
Mud bottom with remnants of timber cutting
Average depth 10 feet; maximum depth 35 feet.
Lake Atkins was the first Arkansas lake partially financed under the Dingell-Johnson Act with funds from federal excise taxes on fishing equipment. Built on Horsepen and Ten Yard creeks, the lake is packed with stumps, brush and logs, providing excellent fish habitat. Boat lanes are cut through some of the timber, but boaters should watch for submerged stumps and logs. Four fishing jetties jut into the lake allowing bank anglers access to prime fishing spots. Lake Atkins was drained in 2002 to repair the water-control structure and reduce rough fish populations. Boat lanes were cut, brush piles were placed and the drawdown tower was rebuilt. A new boat ramp was built at Lucky Landing and a courtesy peir was rebuilt at Bell Chapel Access. The lake was restocked with Florida-strain largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish, crappie and channel catfish. The Florida-strain bass have taken to the rennovation, and the lake is known for trophy-class fish. The lake is fertilized annually to increase the size and numbers of fish it produces and is considered by many to be the best little fishery in west Arkansas.
- District Information
Fisheries District 9
1266 Lock and Dam Road
Russellville, AR 72802
Lucky Landing (479-641-7615), a private bait shop on the south side of the lake, offers boat and motor rentals, campsites with water and electric hookups, restrooms, rental cabins and fishing supplies. The ramp at Lucky Landing is public and free to use. Atkins City Park on the northeast corner features a pavilion and picnic facilities. The lake also sports two handicapped-accessible fishing piers, four fishing jetties, five concrete boat ramps and one shale boat ramp. Motels and restaurants are available in Atkins.
- Fish Forage
Shad, small sunfish
- Major Sportfish
Largemouth bass, redear sunfish, crappie, bluegill, channel catfish and flathead catfish
- Management Plan
- Other Fish
Blue catfish, bowfin, bullhead, common carp, grass carp, grass pickerel, green sunfish, longear sunfish, warmouth
- Other Points of Interest
Other outdoor attractions in the area include Galla Creek Wildlife Management Area just to the southwest off Arkansas 105, Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge across the Arkansas River to the south and Dardanelle Lock and Dam on the Arkansas River at Russellville.
Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.
- Restaurants, Camping and other Facilities
Restaurants, motels and other amenities are available in nearby Russellville and Dardanelle.
- Visible Cover
Cypress trees, standing dead timber, stumps, willows, buckbrush