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Craig D. Campbell Lake Conway Reservoir

Access

Exit 135 (Mayflower) on Interstate 40 offers access by way of Arkansas Highway 365 to docks on the west side of the lake, or Arkansas Highway 89 and Clinton Road to docks on the east side. The upper lake can be reached by roads branching off Arkansas Highway 286. Signs mark access routes on major roads.

Handicapped-accessible fishing piers are available.

Aquatic Vegetation

Water lilies

Area Specific Regulations
  • Crappie shorter than 10 inches must be released immediately.
  • Legal to take game fish with spear guns during season.
Area Type

Lake

Bottom Features

Creek channels; inundated ponds; mud, rock and shale bottom

Constructed

1948

Depth

Average depth 4.5 feet; maximum depth 16 feet.

Description

Lake Conway is the largest Game and Fish Commission lake and the largest lake ever constructed by a state wildlife agency. Because of its large size, central location and excellent fishing, it has been one of the state's favored fishing spots since it was built on Palarm Creek in 1948. Lake Conway was the first lake constructed by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. Conway is best known for its seemingly endless supply of bluegills and redears. Creel surveys indicate that bream are not only the most popular fish, they account for the most poundage taken by anglers. Bass and crappie fans also flock to Conway, hoping to catch one of the lake's lunker largemouths or a mess of big slabs. Big blue and channel catfish are abundant, and Conway is a hotbed for monster flatheads. Fishing is good around logjams, brushpiles, stumps, cypress trees, lily pads buckbrush, inundated lakes, creek channels, private docks and the Highway 89 bridge. Numerous boat trails are cleared and marked. Boaters leaving the trails should navigate cautiously. Many stumps and logs lie unseen just below the water's surface, making spare shear pins essential gear here. An east-side nursery pond permits stocking millions of crappies, largemouth bass and catfish directly into the lake. Fingerling fish from hatcheries are fed until they reach sizes ensuring safety from most predators. The fish are then released into the lake through a canal. Before the nursery pond was constructed in 1968, crappie were almost non-existent in Lake Conway.

District Information

Click here for information about land-use policies on AGFC-owned lakes View the Lake Conway Water Level Management Plan (Updated in 2014) How to read the water level at Lake Conway View the Lake Conway Managment Plan View the 2003-09 Lake Conway Managment Plan Evaluation Fisheries District 10 213 A Highway 89 South Mayflower, Arkansas 72106 1-877-470-3309

Facilities

The dozen or so lakeside bait shops (the number fluctuates) provide fishing supplies, boat and motor rentals, picnic grounds, camping areas and restaurants. There are numerous boat ramps around the lake where anglers can launch at no charge or for a small fee. Motels and restaurants are available in Conway, with primitive campsites available on adjacent Camp Robinson Wildlife Demonstration Area.

Fish Forage

Shad, small sunfish

Location

Faulkner County 3 miles south of Conway

Major Sportfish

Blue catfish, bluegill, channel catfish, crappie, flathead catfish, largemouth bass and redear sunfish

Other Fish

Bowfin, buffalo, bullhead, chain pickerel, common carp, drum, grass carp, green sunfish, hybrid bream, longear sunfish, longnose gar, warmouth and white bass.

Other Points of Interest

Adjacent Camp Robinson Wildlife Management Area/Wildlife Demonstration Area covers almost 30,000 acres and offers an shooting range that includes an archery range, a rifle/pistol shooting range with trap and skeet facilities, a dog field trial and training area, and hunting for small game and deer. Hiking, birdwatching and trail riding can also be enjoyed here.

Ownership

Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

Restaurants, Camping and other Facilities

Motels and restaurants are available in nearby Mayflower and Conway, with primitive campsites available on adjacent Camp Robinson Wildlife Demonstration Area.

Size

6,700 acres

Visible Cover

Stumps, buckbrush, cypress trees, log piles and boat docks.

Detailed Interactive Map