Broken Bow Lake Information

Beautiful, clear Broken Bow Lake sits in southeastern Oklahoma in McCurtain County covering 14,000 acres with 180 miles of shoreline and a maximum depth of 185 feet. Rocks cover its floor giving Broken Bow Lake transparent clarity. Dense forest surrounds its natural beauty. The Tulsa District of the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) operates Broken Bow Lake which is fed by the Mountain Fork River. The southern and widest part of Broken Bow Lake is strewn with islands.

There is only one town close to Broken Bow Lake, Hochatown, pronounced how-chuh-tawn. Beavers Bend State Park and Hochatown State Park, and the McCurtain County Wilderness Area cover vast areas of land surrounding much of Broken Bow Lake. Certain areas around Broken Bow Lake provide great opportunities for hunters for deer and turkey.

U.S. 259 runs parallel to the eastern side of Broken Bow Lake, and U.S. 70 runs east to west of its southern border. The loop to access the lake is OK 259A. Broken Bow, Oklahoma, is southwest of the lake on U.S. 70 and the best place to shop for supplies. The rest of the Broken Bow Lake area is rural with very few roads.

Join over 1 million visitors per year to Broken Bow Lake, and besides outdoor fun and water sports, find camping, dining, lodging, festivals, a Choctaw casino, hiking, bird watching, scuba diving, and river floating and kayaking adventures. Its mountainous terrain stretching into the Ouachita Mountain foothills on the east and north and the Kiamichi Mountains on the south gives visitors a truly unique natural experience. The region around Broken Bow Lake is steeped in history.


History of Broken Bow Lake

The Flood Control Act of 1958 authorized the construction of Broken Bow Lake with construction beginning in 1961 and impoundment in 1968. Caddo Indians inhabited the Broken Bow Lake region from 1,00 to 791 A.C., and archeologists found spear points dating back to 6000 B.C.

One of the most important events in Native American history involves the Trail of Tears, which runs parallel to U.S. Route 70 on the southern end of Broken Bow Lake. The U.S. government signed a treaty with the Choctaw Tribe in 1820, which exchanged their homeland in Mississippi for land in today’s McCurtain County, Oklahoma.

McCurtain County is the namesake of a prominent Choctaw chief, and his three sons who also served as chiefs. They named their settlement Con-Chito, which was located in the business district of present day Broken Bow, Oklahoma. Taking advantage of the densely forested lands surrounding them, they formed the Choctaw Lumber Company and built a timber processing gristmill. 

The Choctaws called their hunting trips Owa-chita, now the namesake of the Ouachita Mountain range in Oklahoma and Arkansas. The French explorers named the Kiamichi Mountains, which means “horned screamer”, after a bird that inhabited the region. Beavers Bend State Park is the site of a Choctaw settlement named for John T. Beavers.

A Choctaw Indian who arrived on the Trail of Tears named Hocha settled in Old Hochatown, which is now underneath Broken Bow Lake. Scuba divers can find the remains of the old settlement at the bottom of Broken Bow Lake. When Broken Bow Lake was being built, Hochatown moved its post office, churches, cemetery, and homes to its new location on Highway 259.


Broken Bow Lake Fishing

Fly-fishing anglers flock to Mountain Fork River, which is stocked with rainbow trout year round. This river features a four-mile trophy section where boats and barbed hooks are prohibited right off the southern edge of Broken Bow Lake.

Predominant species in Broken Bow Lake are largemouth, smallmouth, spotted, hybrid striped, and white bass, channel and flathead catfish, black and white crappie, bluegill, green, and redear sunfish, and walleye. Other species include bullheads, paddlefish, northern pike, and lake and shovelnose sturgeon.

Broken Bow Lake has a maximum depth and transparent waters offering fishing enthusiasts a wonderful adventure from a boat or the shoreline. Catch and release fishing for largemouth and smallmouth bass is open year round, unless otherwise noted by the USACE. Motor Trolling is allowed with 1 hook, bait, or lure per angler, and 3 hooks, baits, or lures maximum per boat.

So grab your fishing gear and come out to Broken Bow Lake for an exciting fishing excursion that will make lifetime memories. Want a hassle-free fishing trip? Find a local guide on our Broken Bow Lake Fishing Guides page.


Boating on Broken Bow Lake

Beautiful Boating adventures await you on Broken Bow Lake and both on the upper and lower parts of Mountain Fork River on the northern and southern ends of the lake. Broken Bow Lake is so clear that you can see up to 6 feet in depth under the surface of the water. Broken Bow Lake hosts every type of private boat there is.

Beavers Bend Marina is the only marina on Broken Bow Lake. If you do not own a boat, you can rent houseboats, party barges, tubes, and jet skis at Beaver’s Bend Marina in Beavers Bend State Park, plus several other rental businesses are located within easy access of the lake. River tours, canoeing, kayaking, paddle boating, and tubing are extremely popular. Boat repairs and other services are available. There are public boat ramps around Broken Bow Lake in various parks. If you're looking to buy or sell a boat, check out our Broken Bow Lake Boats for Sale page. 


Broken Bow Lake Marina

There is only one marina serving Broken Bow Lake at Beavers Bend and Hochatown State Park. Beaver's Bend Marina is a full-service marina offering rentals, service, sales, fuel, a retail shop, fishing supplies, snacks and refreshments. Rentals include fishing boats, jet skis, houseboats, cabin cruisers and boat slips. Services include a gas dock, retail store, snacks & refreshments, full repair service, fishing guide services, and new & used boat sales. Learn more on our Broken Bow Lake Marinas page. 


Broken Bow Cabins and Vacation Homes

Rent a cabin at Broken Bow Lake and look forward to building great campfires, grilling on the deck, playing horseshoes and other games, and star gazing after a day of fun in the sun on the water. There are many cabin rental businesses serving Broken Bow Lake, so your options range from luxury cabins to tiny glamping cabins.

Vacation home rentals run from sleeping large groups of people with swimming pools and private fishing docks to cozy smaller cottages with panoramic views of the amazing mountainous terrain surrounding Broken Bow Lake. Hundreds of vacation homes are waiting for you to plan your Broken Bow Lake getaway by individual owners and companies. Be sure to book your cabin or vacation home in advance during peak season. Find the perfect vacation rental on our Broken Bow Cabins page. 


Camping at Broken Bow Lake

Travel down the winding roads through the forests of pine and hardwood trees to find adventure, beautiful scenery, and plenty of activities inside Beavers Bend State Park. This 3,482-acre park offers 47 cabins with kitchenettes, plus 393 campsites and over 50 tent sites spread over eight camping areas. Numerous campsites are available at the southern end of the lake on Mountain Fork River where the trout fishing is excellent. Several private campgrounds offer tent and RV sites. There is no camping in the McCurtain County Wilderness Area on the northeastern border of the lake, and day use permits must be secured at least two weeks before the visitor’s arrival date.

Beavers Bend State Park’s busiest time of the year is October because the rainbow trout bite better in colder weather at Broken Bow Lake and Mountain Fork River. The 40-room Lakeview Lodge at Beaver’s Bend features amazing views of the water with four suites, a great room with a stone fireplace and a conference room, and a free continental breakfast in the great room each morning.

The spectacular views around Broken Bow Lake and Mountain Fork River offer campers wonderful nights under the stars around a campfire while grilling a sumptuous dinner and enjoying family and friends. Please call ahead to make sure you will find availability at the perfect camping spot. See what outstanding features Broken Bow Lake campgrounds have to offer on our Broken Bow Lake Campgrounds & RV Parks page. 


Hiking Broken Bow Lake

Broken Bow Lake and the surrounding areas offer unique hiking experiences along with horseback riding trails. Beavers Bend State Park has twelve public hiking trail loops ranging from 26 miles to less than a mile long with skill levels of easy, moderate, and hard. The mountains and the dense forests that these trails snake through give hikers and horseback riders great opportunities for wildlife sightings and bird watching.

The McCurtain County Wilderness Area issues hiking and backpacking permits for the area east of the reservoir, and they may be secured by contacting the area’s biologist at least two weeks before the arrival date. The hiking trail and boat ramp on the west side are open to public use. Members of the public who use the west side of the area must have at least one of the following: a valid Oklahoma Fishing License, Oklahoma Hunting License, or an Annual Wildlife Conservation Passport.


Hunting at Broken Bow Lake

Predominant game species in the Broken Bow Lake region include white-tailed deer in fair numbers, eastern wild turkeys in fair numbers, and cottontail and swamp rabbits in low numbers. Furbearing game species are coyote, bobcat, and raccoon. Migrating waterfowl and resident wood ducks occur infrequently on the reservoir.

The Broken Bow Wildlife Management Areas covers 5,420 acres in northern McCurtain County, and the McCurtain County Wilderness Area covers approximately 14,000 acres in northern McCurtain County. Hunters must apply for an Oklahoma Hunting License, or an Annual Wildlife Conservation Passport by calling McCurtain County game wardens.

The Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area covers 203,180 acres and is privately owned and available to the public by purchasing a Land Access Fee permit available at all hunting and fishing license vendors. There are no hunting fees.


Things to do at Broken Bow Lake

An amphitheater, gift shop, grocery, restaurant and the Forest Heritage Center is located within Beavers Bend State Park. There are plenty of restaurants within a short distance from the lake in Hochatown and Broken Bow offering a variety of cuisines and fast-food joints and few serve beer, wine, and mixed drinks.

The Cedar Creek Golf Course in Beavers Bend State Park is one of the most beautiful courses in Oklahoma. Crystal-clear Cedar Creek runs through the course, providing beauty, wildlife and hazard. The course features 18 holes at par 72, Bermuda grass greens, tees and fairways, a putting green, driving range, pro shop with cart and club rentals, snacks and drinks. Book a tee-time online. Play mini golf near Hochatown.

Riverman Trailrides provides the perfect setting on horseback for bird watchers, wildlife photographers and nature enthusiasts of all kinds. Day rides are available and overnight primitive rides. Two trail bosses, with a combined total of 40 years experience, will lead visitors through the scenic surrounding area. 14 horses are available, and you can make reservations year round. All day rides include a barbecue lunch on the trail.

At the Hochatown Petting Zoo, visitors will meet adorable barn animals, pet friendly reptiles and listen to exotic birds sing. You can see fuzzy guinea pigs, baby ducks and soft goats roam the grounds and even pet or feed them. Sometimes, donkeys, tadpoles, hedgehogs and parrots take up residence at Hochatown Petting Zoo, along with orphaned and injured animals undergoing rehabilitation from licenses wildlife rehabilitation personnel.

There are lots of family-friendly activities in and around Hochatown besides the petting zoo, including go-karts, zipline, boat tours, mini golf and bowling. 

Visit the Mountain Fork Brewery in Hochatown, Oklahoma, which serves over 10 beers on-tap, and 6-packs and growlers, plus a family friendly restaurant with brick-oven pizza, wings, sandwiches, salads, and desserts. Or relax at Vojai’s Winery, the Tasting Room, the Knotted Rope Winery, and Fishtales Winery and Vineyard, all located near Hochatown. Look at the list of Broken Bow Lake attractions on our Things to do at Broken Bow Lake page. 


Broken Bow Lake Weather

Broken Bow Lake sees an average of 54 inches of rain per year, with 2 inches of snow and 218 days of sunshine. The winter low in January is 28 degrees and a summer high in July of 92 degrees. April, May, and October are the most comfortable months for this region. Stay up to date on our Broken Bow Lake Weather Report page. 


Broken Bow Lake Real Estate

Waterfront lake homes on Broken Bow Lake can range from over a million dollars on down. There are cheaper houses available nearby, but no subdivisions, communities, or school districts on or near Broken Bow Lake. The closest town with a Walmart is Broken Bow, Oklahoma. Check out experienced real estate professionals serving Broken Bow Lake, and shop for the perfect lake home or mountain cabin on our  Broken Bow Lake Homes for Sale page. 


Broken Bow Lake Zip Codes

McCurtain County: 74722, 74728, 74734, 74736, 74737, 74740, 74745, 74750, 74752, 74754, 74755, 74764, 74766, and 74963.


Flora and Fauna

The McCurtain County Wilderness Area contains the largest virgin, shortleaf pine/hardwood forest remaining in the nation. Some riparian forest, consisting of hardwoods, such as sweet and black gums, red maple and elms occur along stream courses. White-tailed deer, eastern wild turkeys, rabbits, coyote, bobcat, and raccoons all call Broken Bow Lake region home. Migrating waterfowl and resident wood ducks are present and Bald Eagles winter in the area. Bird watching and wildlife viewing provide excellent opportunities for nature lovers and nature photographers.

Broken Bow Lake Email Updates


 

Broken Bow Lake Current Weather Alerts

There are no active watches, warnings or advisories.

 

Broken Bow Lake Weather Forecast

Thursday

Sunny

Hi: 87

Thursday Night

Clear

Lo: 70

Friday

Sunny

Hi: 90

Friday Night

Clear

Lo: 71

Saturday

Sunny

Hi: 90

Saturday Night

Clear

Lo: 71

Sunday

Sunny

Hi: 90

Sunday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 73


Broken Bow Lake Water Level (last 30 days)


Water Level on 9/9: 615.92 (-1.08)