Horseshoe Reservoir

Quick Facts

Horseshoe Reservoir

Arizona

(602) 225-5200

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

The recreation site at Horseshoe Reservoir, located along the Verde River, offers camping, picnicking, fishing and boating. Bald eagles are frequently seen in this vicinity. Ocotillo Boating Site provides the only boat ramp (small boats only) on the entire reservoir.

Boating and fishing at Horseshoe Reservoir depend on the regular fluctuations in water levels. It is routine for the Salt River Project to nearly drain the reservoir in the summer to provide water for the metropolitan area. Before considering boating at Horseshoe Lake, please check the water level at SRP website. The recreation site is open year-round.

Recreation at Horseshoe Reservoir is managed by Tonto National Forest and is part of the Cave Creek Ranger District. For more information, contact (480) 595-3300. The reservoir was created by Horseshoe Dam, built by the Bureau of Reclamation, and is part of the Salt River Project.

Map of Horseshoe Reservoir

Latitude, Longitude: 33.998867, -111.718558

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Activities

  • Boating

    Non-motorized and small motorized boats are allowed on the reservoir.

    There is a paved boat launch at Ocotillo Boating Site, the only boat launch on the entire reservoir. Only boats with motors that are 25 horse power or less are allowed on the reservoir. Trailer parking is not recommended for trailers over 40 feet. Boat launch corrals accommodate small boats only. The speed limit on the reservoir is 20 mph.

    Only non-motorized boats are allowed on the Verde River. There is a river access point at the recreation area.

    Horseshoe Reservoir is completely closed to water skiing, parasailing and personal watercraft. Any part of the Verde River that is free-flowing is closed to all motorized use. On-lake events are not allowed.

  • Bird Watching

    Bald eagles are frequently seen in this vicinity.

  • Camping

    There are about 10 campsites shaded by large mesquite trees. They have grills, picnic tables, trash service and vault toilets, but no drinking water. Camping is on a first come, first served basis. There are no reservations. Please remember to pack out all trash.

  • Fishing

    Fish species include large and smallmouth bass, crappie, sunfish, and channel and flathead catfish.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is regulated by the state of Arizona and allowed on the Tonto National Forest during open seasons with applicable permits. Contact the Arizona Game and Fish Department for more information on open dates and regulations.

  • Picnicking

    There are two picnic shelters at Ocotillo Boating Site. There are also picnic tables at campsites. Please remember to pack out all trash.

  • Wildlife Watching

    Bald eagles are frequently seen in this vicinity.

Seasonality/Weather

Open year-round.

Directions

Driving

Horseshoe Reservoir is 10 miles north of Bartlett Lake on the Verde River. It can be reached by a well-marked turnoff from the road to Bartlett Lake.

To reach the lake

* From CarefreeDrive Cave Creek Road until you reach Bartlett Road. * Take a right onto Bartlett Road and go 6 miles until you reach the junction with FR 205. * Take a left onto FR 205 (which is unpaved). Continue for 11 miles until you reach the reservoir.

To reach Ocotillo Boating Site

* From CarefreeTake Cave Creek Road for 7 miles. * Take a left onto FR 205 and continue for 6 miles, until you reach the junction of FR 205 and FR 19. * FR 205 will turn left and become unpaved. Follow it for 10 miles until you reach the site.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(602) 225-5200

Links