Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area

Quick Facts

Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area


(970) 248-0658

Map Directions

Things To Do


Recreation at Horsethief Canyon is managed by the Colorado Division of Wildlife under agreement with the Bureau of Reclamation, Western Colorado Area Office - Northern Division, Grand Junction, Colorado. The area was acquired and developed to partially replace wildlife habitat values lost as a result of the construction of the Grand Valley Unit of the Colorado River Basin Salinity Control Project. Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area has 2,080 acres of land which offers access to various trails leading to a wilderness area. The area receives about 1,500 visits per year with visitation expected to increase as the area becomes better known. This is an ideal site for viewing desert bighorn, mule deer, and waterfowl including Canada geese and great blue herons. Raptors include bald and golden eagles and several hawk species. The area follows the Colorado River. Because this area follows the river and its primary function is for wildlife habitat, insects can be a nuisance, especially during the spring and early summer. Insect repellent, hats, long-sleeves and pants are recommended.

Map of Horsethief Canyon State Wildlife Area

Latitude, Longitude: 39.121005, -108.731003



  • Bicycling

    Opportunities are available.

  • Fishing

    Whitewater fishing is allowed in the wildlife area.

  • Hiking

    Hiking trails are available that lead into the wilderness area.

  • Horseback Riding

    Opportunities are available.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is regulated by the Colorado Division of Wildlife. Hunting is permitted with shotguns, handheld bows, and muzzle-loading rifles. Turkey hunting is prohibited. Popular hunting game are waterfowl, dove, deer, coyote, rabbit, and pheasant.



Take I-70 to Fruita, Colorado, then go south on Colorado Highway 340 for 4 miles, turn west at King View Estates on County Road 1.3 and drive for about 2 miles to the wildlife area boundary.

Phone Numbers


(970) 248-0658