Dawt Mill Bridge, Tecumseh access now open; Gooley, Haskins Ford, Smokey Road and Steel Tracks still closed

Norfork Lake has receded enough to allow cars to drive over the bridge on County Road 318 at Dawt and vessels on the North Fork of the White River to pass under the bridge. The flat-bottom boat pictured here motored upstream, then went under the bridge and back down while Times reporter Jessi Dreckman was there Monday afternoon.

At this week’s meeting of the Ozark County Commissioners, they discussed the lake levels and how they are impacting Ozark County roads. 

At the time of the meeting, around 9 a.m. Monday, Norfork Lake was at 567.6 (15.64 feet above its full pool of 552), and Bull Shoals Lake was at 682.51 (23.51 feet above its full pool of 659).


Bridge at Dawt Mill is passable

“So, you can cross at the Dawt Mill Bridge now?” Presiding Commissioner John Turner asked Eastern District Commissioner Gary Collins. 

“Yeah,” Collins answered.

“I saw a power boat tied up to one end of the bridge there, so it’s a few feet below the bridge now,” Turner continued.  

The commissioners were referring to a bridge on County Road 318 that crosses the North Fork of the White River at Dawt Mill Resort. The bridge has been impassable through the early summer months, submerged beneath the backed-up waters of Norfork Lake. Online lake levels show that the lake topped out this year on June 21 at 573.11 feet, a little over 5 feet higher than it is right now. 


Other roads closed

Other roadways haven’t fared as well, the commissioners say. Also on the eastern side of the county, Smokey Road (County Road 551B) in the Tecumseh area is still not passable.

“If you cross it in a car, it will stall out,” Collins said. 

This week’s sheriff’s report (which begins on page 7) includes a call at 1:33 a.m. Friday about someone who “put her car in the water” on Smokey Road. No injuries were reported. The vehicle was towed.

Western District Commissioner Layne Nance said that, on the western side, County Road 614 at Gooley Creek remains closed, and County Road 683 at Haskins Ford and County Road 861 at Steel Tracks are all impassable due to continued high lake levels.


Tecumseh access open

Although the commissioners didn’t discuss the Tecumseh access, as it doesn’t impact any county roads, some lake-goers will be happy to know that Norfork Lake has receded enough to allow the newly rebuilt access to reopen. The canoe/kayak ramp and nearby parking lot, as well as the boat ramp and large parking lot are all accessible to traffic now. 

Ozark County Times

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