Felsenthal Lock and Dam, Arkansas & Louisiana, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - South - Arkansas - Timberlands - Louisiana - Sportsman's Paradise -

Also known as:  Lack Jack Lee

The Felsenthal Lock and Dam, also known as Lake Jack Lee, is located in South Central Arkansas at the confluence of the Ouachita and Saline Rivers. A small portion of the 15,000-acre lake is located in the state of Louisiana, and the rest is sprawled across Arkansas’ Ashley, Bradley, and Union Counties. Construction of the reservoir and dam was completed in 1984 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for flood control, energy, and recreational purposes. The lock is 84 feet wide and 600 feet long, and impounds a slack-water pool that stretches for roughly 100 miles.

The Felsenthal Lock and Dam is part of the Ouachita River Basin, which is characterized by hilly wetlands and the 605-mile Ouachita River running through it. Local recreational activities include boating, camping, fishing, hunting, and hiking. Fishing is fruitful year round in these waters, and common species include black bass, crappies, sunfish, bream, freshwater drum, rock bass and chain pickerel. Additionally, the lake is stocked with largemouth bass on an annual basis. Two day-use facilities are located at Lake Jack Lee, including a picnic area, playground, and fishing pier. Boat launches, parking lots, and restrooms are also available to the public.

The Felsenthal National Wildife Refuge proudly boasts the status of the largest green tree reservoir in the world – common arboreal species include nuttall oak, sweetgum, and willow oak. Attracting 400,000 visitors per year, the preserve is composed of 65,000 acres of protected wetlands, hardwood forests, one 3-acre pond, one 1-acre pond and the Felsenthal Lock and Dam. It also contains archaeological sites belonging the Caddo tribe – some dating as far back as 5,000 years. These Native Americans are best remembered for their phenomenal ceramic and copper artisan creations. Various ceremonial sites revolving around corn and tobacco harvests can be found throughout the park, along with ancient burial mounds and artifacts. Conveniently situated within the Mississippi flyway (one of the four major migratory bird pathways), the refuge was established in 1970 with four central purposes in mind: providing a habitat for migratory birds and endangered species, protecting cultural resources, and providing public recreation and environmental education.

The Felsenthal Lock and Dam area is home to 100 species of birds (including bald eagles and endangered red-cockaded woodpeckers), American alligators and black bears, which can be observed on the several hiking trails and 11 camping spots throughout the park. Youth turkey hunts, fishing derbies, and other special events are offered seasonally. During the autumn months, Lake Jack Lee’s elevation rises by five feet, and spillage into nearby ponds and sloughs raises the park’s water surface area from 15,000 to 36,000 acres. Hunters love the influx of winter waterfowl that this flooding tends to bring.

South of the Felsenthal Lock and Dam, in the state of Louisianna, sits the Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge. Established in 1978, the 14,500-acre preserve is 18 miles long and 10 miles wide. Its hardwood forests, reforested farmland, lakes and waterways provide an exceptional habitat for geese, ducks, and water birds, The endangered Louisiana black bear also finds sanctuary among these grounds, along with alligators, turkey, deer, bald eagles, beavers, and squirrels. Various conservation efforts are in place to foster the survival of local wildlife, including prescribed burns, farming, silvicultural treatments (the thinning of trees), invasive species control, forest restoration and the cultivation of moist soil habitats.

Just five miles east of Felsenthal Lock and Dam, on Highway 83, lies the town of Crossett. Here, visitors will enjoy the Crossland Zoo and the historic Wiggins Cabin/Old Company House. Just east of Crossett you’ll find El Dorado, which has consistently featured a “showdown at Sunset” performance every Saturday night since the 1980s. This reenactment imitates the 1902 shootout between two rivaling El Dorado families: the Tuckers and the Parnells. The city is also home to the South Arkansas Arts Center, South Arkansas Symphony, and South Arkansas Arboretum.

Visitors with a sense of adventure and a love of the water will appreciate all that Felsenthal Lock and Dam has to offer. Local attractions surrounding Lake Jack Lee make for a unique and varied experience, and one that you are not soon to forget.

Things to do at Felsenthal Lock and Dam

  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Picnicking
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • National Wildlife Refuge
  • Playground

Fish species found at Felsenthal Lock and Dam

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Chain Pickerel
  • Crappie
  • Freshwater Drum
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Pickerel
  • Pike
  • Sunfish

Felsenthal Lock and Dam Photo Gallery

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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