Discover How Deep Lake Eufaula Really Is

Written by Tavia Fuller Armstrong
Published: December 2, 2023
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Key Points:

  • Lake Eufaula is the largest lake that rests entirely within the borders of Oklahoma.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began construction on the lake in 1956 and completed it in 1964.
  • Lake Eufaula has a maximum depth of 87 feet with an average depth of approximately 23 feet.

Oklahoma has some of the most beautiful lakes in the United States. Lake Eufaula is no exception. This scenic lake stretches into parts of the Cherokee, Choctaw, and Muscogee Creek Nations. Visible on both sides of I-40, Lake Eufaula sparkles like a massive gem in the lush, green landscape as you pass through eastern Oklahoma. On hot summer days, it seems so wrong to drive past the cool, inviting water, though most travelers must press on down the highway. Still, Lake Eufaula attracts more than 2.5 million visitors a year. There, they find fantastic recreational opportunities, including boating, fishing, swimming, hiking, and much more.

How Deep Is Lake Eufaula

Lake Eufaula infographic
Lake Eufaula, completed in 1964, is the largest lake entirely in the state of Oklahoma.

Lake Eufaula is the largest lake that lies entirely within the state. Located on the Canadian River, the lake was formed with the construction of the Eufaula Dam. Lake Eufaula provides flood control, a power source, and a water supply for the region. It has more than 600 miles of shoreline, as well as 102,200 surface acres. The maximum depth of Lake Eufaula, at 87 feet, nearly quadruples its average depth of 23 feet.

How to Get to Lake Eufaula

Lake Eufaula, technically named Eufaula Lake by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, sits on I-40 near Eufaula, Oklahoma. U.S. Highway 69 also crosses the lake running north and south. Lake Eufaula lies about two hours east of Oklahoma City, and a little more than an hour west of Fort Smith, Arkansas. It takes about an hour and a half to get there from Tulsa, and less than half an hour from McAlester.

Recreation Opportunities at Lake Eufaula

You can find a wide variety of recreation opportunities at Lake Eufaula in the heart of eastern Oklahoma. Both active pursuits and relaxing fun can be found on and around this gorgeous lake.


Beautiful Lake Eufaula, OK Aerial.

Lake Eufaula is stocked with numerous types of fish, including bass,


, crappie, and more.

©Vantage Point Videography/

Folks can fish from the shorelines, from boats, or from climate-controlled marinas year-round. Lake Eufaula is stocked with largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and white bass and holds tournaments each year. Multiple types of catfish, as well as crappie, sunfish, and other species, populate the lake as well.


Look out over Lake Eufaula on a pretty day and you’ll see all manner of boats dotting the water. Everything from sailboats and speedboats to fishing boats and even yachts converge on the water. Some visitors bring their own watercraft while others rent vessels at local marinas.


Lake Eufaula sunset, Oklahoma, USA

Enjoy amazing views as you hike around the parks at Lake Eufaula.


Recreation areas around the lake, including those at Lake Eufaula State Park near the north end of the lake and Arrowhead State Park at the south end, have enticing hiking trails. Visitors can enjoy nature and possibly observe wildlife including rabbits, lizards, snakes, shore birds, waterfowl, deer, coyotes, bobcats, and even North American black bears.


Swimming is allowed at several locations around Lake Eufaula. Beaches and coves offer families a cool respite from the summer heat. However, water levels can affect the swim beaches, so visitors should plan ahead.

Golf, Disc Golf, Horseback Riding, and More

The state parks at Lake Eufaula, as well as other recreation areas, offer several other opportunities for excitement. These include golf courses and disc golfing. Stables provide horseback riding for both experienced and novice riders. You can ride ATVs in certain areas. Hunting is a popular activity in season, if you have the proper permits. These are just a few of the many recreational opportunities to find at Lake Eufaula all year round.


Sunset over Eufaula Lake

Spend a peaceful night at beautiful Lake Eufaula and wake up to an adventure.


No matter whether you prefer to pitch a tent, park an RV, rent a yurt or rustic cabin, or settle down in a luxurious home away from home, you can find plenty of accommodations around Lake Eufaula. This lovely lake is just far enough away from the cities to feel like a true escape, but not so far that you’ll break the bank getting there. So go, check it out.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © JohnDSmith/

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About the Author

Tavia Fuller Armstrong is a writer at A-Z Animals where her primary focus is on birds, mammals, reptiles, and chemistry. Tavia has been researching and writing about animals for approximately 30 years, since she completed an internship with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Tavia holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology with a wildlife emphasis from the University of Central Oklahoma. A resident of Oklahoma, Tavia has worked at the federal, state, and local level to educate hundreds of young people about science, wildlife, and endangered species.

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