MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. (USACE) - The Corps of Engineers, Mountain Home Project Office has closed three swim beaches on Norfork and Bull Shoals Lakes until further notice. The beaches affected are Lead Hill and Oakland Beaches on Bull Shoals Lake, as well as Panther Bay Beach on Lake Norfork. The temporary closure is the result of higher than acceptable E. coli levels that were found during routine testing conducted by the Arkansas Department of Health.
According to Corps officials, the high bacteria level is a result of flood waters and possible fecal material from the resident flocks of geese. The Corps has posted signs and swimming will not be allowed in these locations until test results indicate it is safe to do so.
Safe alternative swimming areas are located in the area at Cranfield Park on Norfork Lake, and Tucker Hollow and Theodosia on Bull Shoals Lake. Corps officials said the main water body of the reservoirs has not been tested but are not believed to have elevated bacterial levels.