Tom Merrill Recreation Area

Bayou Bodcau Reservoir



Tom Merrill Recreation Area offers a quiet, Class A campground with 20 RV/Tent sites and a variety of amenities. Visitors can explore the nearby Bayou Bodcau Wildlife Management Area and Ivan Lake, as well as Bossier City and Shreveport's attractions. Campers can also enjoy fishing, boating and birding in the area.


Tom Merrill Recreation Area sits downstream of Bayou Bodcau Dam, along the Bodcau Creek. The small quiet campground provides all the facilities of a Class A campground, and is open year-round to visitors. Bodcau Creek provides fishing and boating opportunities, along with hiking/biking trails and other recreation. Bayou Bodcau is a large wildlife management area, and is very popular during hunting season for deer and other wild game. 

Downtown Bossier City and Shreveport are only a 30-45 minute drive away, and have many opportunities for other interests such as museums and restaurants. Bodcau is well off the main travel roads, so traffic and other noise issues are of no concern. 

The campground has no designated fee booth and is by-reservation-only, so all reservations must be made through Reservations can be made up to 6 months in advance or upon arrival; we recommend reserving prior to entering the campground.

For more information on Bayou Bodcau, please visit the following website. (


Tom Merrill Recreation Area has 20 campsites, all of which have electric hookups. Some campsites are closer to the forest, while some are more open within the park. All sites are within walking distance of the water. Amenities at this recreation area include flush toilets, showers, playground, outdoor exercise equipment, dump station, a game cleaning station, disc golf course, and bike trail. The outlet channel, where Bodcau Reservoir drains into the Bodcau Creek, is an excellent place for fishing. 

20 RV/Tent sites (1 Handicap Accessible) with:

-20/30/50 AMP Hookup

-Water Hookup

-Firepit and Grill

-Picnic Table

-Lantern Hangar

-RV Pad 

Facilities available for all campers:

-Picnic Shelter (requires separate reservation)


-Showerhouse & Bathroom

-Game Cleaning Station

-Dump station 

Campground Host available for assistance when stationed on site.

Natural Features

Bayou Bodcau is 33,500 acres of public land, much of which consists of moss-laden cypress swamps. The area also consists of lowland and upland areas, consisting of mixed deciduous or pine forests. Bayou Bodcau is considered a "dry reservoir", and only fills up during periods of high rainfall. The creek can be slow moving and almost stagnant during the dry summer, but a swift and deep torrent during the cooler winter.

The area is home to a diverse group of natural areas, and hosts some rare and endangered species. Alligators, beaver and more can be found amongst the forest and swamps. Cypress Swamps, Bottomland Forests, Morse Clay Calcareous Prairies and more can be found within the project boundaries. The project is also home to some of the largest trees in the state, and such "Champion Trees" have been found and recorded at multiple locations throughout the park. 

Bodcau is also home to 500 acre Ivan Lake, which is a small but well-maintained lake for fishing and boating. The lake is known to be popular with local fisherman, and wildlife such as Bald Eagles can be spotted there.

Nearby Attractions

There are many other nearby attractions including South Abundant East Recreation Area, the Durden House, the Rifle Range, a Horse Camp and Horse Trails, ATV/UTV Trails, and Ivan Lake. Ivan Lake is a small local lake well known for fishing, boating and birding. 

Bossier City and Shreveport are within 30 to 45 minutes drive of the campground. The area consists of many different attractions, including museums, a minor league Hockey team, and Barksdale Air Force Base, which has a small museum attached to it. Bossier City also has a large Convention Center where events are often held. 

There's also other natural attractions, including Red River Wildlife Refuge in Bossier City. 

Charges & Cancellations

Last minute changes and cancellations may be subject to additional fees.

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