Woolly Hollow Lake is a lake in the eastern part of Hot Spring County, Arkansas within The Ozarks. It has an area of 2,400 acres (970ha), and lies at the head of Bayou Bartholomew, which flows north-west into the Big River about one mile east of the lake.
The bayou derives its name from the large quantity of woolly hair found along its banks. The state park features bass fishing, camping facilities, boat rentals, hiking trails, mountain biking routes, playground areas, cabins, 96-room lodge, conference center, equestrian stable, golf course, swimming pool, tennis courts, and nature trail.
In 2010, the Woolly Hollow Marina was opened on Woolly Hollow Lake; it includes 100 slip marina with paved road access, electrical hookups, water, and trash receptacles, plus covered picnic shelters for use by registered campers. Campsites range from modern with all amenities, to tent only, to primitive without conveniences. Backcountry sites are designated by white blazes. To register for a site, you must have your driver’s license on file with the park office. Boat registration is available at the marina.
There are three back country loop trails that provide excellent examples of trees commonly seen in the region:
- Blackjack oak
- American elm
- green ash
- soapberry tree
- swamp chestnut
- red maple
These trails also feature birds, butterflies, and other wildlife typical of woodland habitats. Hikers need to be wary of poison ivy, though, so wear protective clothing.
Mountain bike enthusiasts can ride the dedicated MTB route around the lake, or take advantage of the many miles of dirt roads and paths throughout the park. One such road leads past the lodge, where a popular gravel bar provides ample space for parking your truck, trailer, surfboard, etc. while enjoying refreshments and admiring the scenery.
This stretch of road also connects to the MTB route, providing interconnectivity between road and trail networks. Two additional MTB routes exist, both of which start near the Woolly Hollow Marina. Route 1 travels up Bald Knob Road before turning off onto Turkey Creek Road and then heads out to Highway246. Route 2 starts across from the Woolly Hollow Lodge, taking visitors down Pin Oak Trace before turning off onto Little Piney Road. Canoeists can rent canoes or kayaks at the marina, and enjoy exploring the quiet waters of the lake.
Fishing is another favorite activity at Woolly Hollow Lake. Bass, crappie, catfish, bream, perch, and sunfish may be caught here. Visitors needing accommodations other than standard campsites can stay at the 96-room lodge or utilize any of the other hotel, resort, and cabin lodging options. Conference centers, outdoor amphitheaters, and private event pavilions are available during warmer months. An equestrian stable holds horses, ponies, mules and burros for rental when the facility is closed. Golfers will appreciate the challenging yet fair conditions offered by the Woolly Hollow Golf Course. Tennis courts, soccer fields, and playgrounds are common sights, scattered throughout the park. Nature lovers will enjoy strolling the grounds, looking for signs of wildlife, birdwatching, and butterfly watching.
A visitor’s center open daily offers programs, workshops, camps, boating and canoeing exhibits, as well as opportunities to view wildlife, harvest wild hogs, camp overnight, take horseback riding lessons, or get archery and muzzle loading permits.
Eastern Shore is accessible via a causeway, this section of the lake contains mostly forested wetlands.Animals that live in this section of the park includes:
- White-tailed deer
Bird species includes:
- Wild turkey
- bald eagles
Common fish include: