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Central & Eastern Region
Lake Owyhee State Park
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Lake Owyhee State Park © Michael Skourtes
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee © Louis Ruth
Photographed by Louis Ruth photography January 2015. This shows the beautiful reflections the Owyhee canyons and rock cliffs have and the deep colors of the lake. The surrounding mountains are beautiful and well worth a visit.
Lake Owyhee State Park Rugged Lake Owyhee © Louis Ruth
In the Spring months on Lake Owyhee the water color is an aqua green / blue. The rugged rocks are spectacular.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Fall morning © Louis Ruth
A beautiful morning on Lake Owyhee. The Fall colors show beautifully. Calm aqua blue waters.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lale Owyhee © Louis Ruth
Morning light and glass-like water with beautiful reflections
Lake Owyhee State Park A fall morning on Lake Owyhee © Louis Ruth
This photo shows off the brilliant colors and the aqua blue water. In background you can see the rugged terrain of the Owyhee Mountains. The foreground is in complete shadow and other areas show the Dynamic morning light.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Amazing morning © Louis Ruth
As a photographer the morning light can be some of the most dramatic lighting. This photo capture the rugged landscape of Lake Owyhee. To the right is the dam.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Mountains © Louis Ruth
This photo shows the mirror-like water and reflections of the rugged Owyhee mountains surrounding the lake
Lake Owyhee State Park © Michael Skourtes
Lake Owyhee State Park Owyhee Colors © Louis Ruth
This shows the Owyhee mountain colors
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Scapes © Louis Ruth
The hills surrounding Lake Owyhee are forever changing in the light.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee a mirror morning © Louis Ruth
in the Spring the water color and mountains change colors. No wind on the water gives a photographer great opportunities.
Lake Owyhee State Park © Michael Skourtes
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Sunset © Louis Ruth
Along the river of Lake Owyhee outside the city of Adrian, you will see beautiful rock features and cliffs. You can see the sunset beyond the soft rolling hills.
Lake Owyhee State Park Vibrant Sunset © Louis Ruth
Photographed over Lake Owyhee State Park river area along the windy road. This photo shows the beautiful magnificent colors reflecting on the water below. An ND grad filter was used on the sky to cut thru the haze and show a silhouette.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Inlets © Louis Ruth
Lake Owyhee has many spectacular inlets, coves and rock face features. The colors of the water differ depending on season and time of the day.
Lake Owyhee State Park Lake Owyhee Soft © Louis Ruth
Shown here is part of the Lake Owyhee State Park where the mountains are rugged with beauty
Lake Owyhee State Park Sunset over Owyhee © Louis Ruth
Sunset over the Owhyees was photographed near the rock tunnel pass thru. This sunset shows the tangerines and purples in the sky at the sunset time.
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1298 Owyhee Lake Road
Adrian, Oregon   97901
(lat:43.6271 lon:-117.2334) map location

Phone: 800-551-6949
Toll Free: 800-551-6949
Reservations: 541-339-2331
Lake Owyhee State Park lies next to a 53-mile-long lake formed by Owyhee Dam. Breathtaking views of the Owyhee Mountains await. A boat trip up the lake (we sell fuel, ice, and food to help you stock up) from the park is one of the many not-to-be-missed experiences in eastern Oregon. Look closely! Bighorn sheep and pronghorn antelope live here, as do golden eagles, coyotes, mule deer, wild horses and (rarely) mountain lions. Critters aren't your game? Rockhounds and hikers are welcome in this wilderness paradise. Use the park as your base camp to explore the badlands of Oregon.

The main campground (McCormack) has electric and tent sites, showers, a boat ramp, tepees, a wastewater dump station, and more. The Indian Creek campground has electric sites, fuel, ice and a boat ramp. The Gordon Gulch day-use area has a boat ramp and a large, shaded picnic area.
History of the Area
Located in Eastern Oregon, the park was established in 1958 following the completion of Owyhee Dam on the Owyhee River. The dam's construction resulted in a reservoir that is now known as Lake Owyhee.

The area where this state recreational site resides has been inhabited for thousands of years by various indigenous tribes such as Shoshone and Paiute before European settlers arrived. It became an important location during westward expansion due to its proximity to Snake River which served as a significant route for pioneers traveling along Oregon Trail.

In early 20th century, plans were made to construct a dam with dual purpose: flood control and irrigation supply. Construction began around late-1920s under U.S Bureau of Reclamation supervision and completed after nearly ten years later creating one of largest man-made lakes at time - Lake Owyhee.
 Electric Sitesyes
 Water/Electric Sitesyes
 Full Hookup Sitesyes
1. Indian Creek Campground: This campground is located on the eastern shore of Lake Owyhee and offers 29 tent/trailer campsites, some with electrical hookups.

2. McCormack Campground: Located near the dam at Lake Owyhee State Park, this campsite has both RV sites (with full hookup) and primitive camping options available.

3. Gordon Gulch Day Use Area & Boat Ramp: While not a traditional overnight campground, it's worth mentioning for those interested in boating or day trips to enjoy fishing or picnicking by the lake side.

4. Leslie Gulch Recreation Site: Slocum Creek Campgrounds : Although technically outside of Lake Owyhee State Park boundaries but still within close proximity to explore park features; these free first-come-first-serve BLM managed campsites offer vault toilets and picnic tables without any water supply so come prepared!

5. Farewell Bend Campground: A bit further away from main attractions yet offering beautiful views over Snake River along with amenities like flush toilets , showers etc..

Remember that all state parks require daily parking permits which can be purchased onsite.
1. Lake Owyhee State Park offers numerous swimming opportunities in its vast, serene lake.
2. The park's Gordon Gulch Day-use Area has a designated swim area for safety.
3. Swimming is allowed throughout the lake but swimmers should be aware of boat traffic and changing weather conditions.
4. There are no lifeguards on duty so visitors must ensure their own safety while swimming.
5. Visitors can enjoy long-distance swims due to the large size of Lake Owyhee or just cool off near shorelines.

The park offers a variety of boating options for visitors. There are two boat ramps available, one at Indian Creek and another near the Gordon Gulch Day-use area. The lake is suitable for both motorized and non-motorized boats including canoes, kayaks or paddleboards. Boaters have access to 53 miles of shoreline with opportunities for fishing as well as water skiing during summer months when conditions allow it.
Enjoy fishing in a serene environment with options for both shore and boat angling. Species include smallmouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, rainbow trout and catfish.

Lake Owyhee State Park is

Lake Owyhee State Park offers scenic picnic spots with tables, grills and restrooms. Some areas provide stunning lake views.
1. Indian Creek Trail: This 4-mile trail offers a moderate hike with beautiful views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

2. Juniper Gulch Hike: A challenging, steep climb that rewards hikers with panoramic vistas from atop Leslie Gulch's towering cliffs.

3. Lake Owyhee Overlook Trail: An easy walk to an overlook providing stunning views over the reservoir and Malheur Butte in distance.

4. Slocum Creek Campground Loop: A short loop around campground area offering glimpses of local wildlife such as deer or birds along its path.

5. Painted Canyon Rim Walkway: Easy walking on paved pathway featuring interpretive signs about geology, flora & fauna; great for families.

6. McCormack Interpretative Nature Path: Short but informative nature trail near park entrance highlighting native plants species.

7. Watson Fishing Pond Loop: Gentle stroll around fishing pond popular among birdwatchers due to variety of waterfowl present year:round.

8. Blue Basin Overlook Trail: Moderate difficulty level hiking route leading up through blue-green claystone formations towards breathtaking viewpoint overlooking entire basin.

9. Honeycombs Wilderness Study Area Trails: Network trails within rugged wilderness zone known for unique honeycomb:like rock structures; suitable experienced hikers only.

10. Three Fingers Rock Viewpoint Track: Steep uphill trek culminating at spectacular vantage point showcasing iconic three fingers rock formation against backdrop vast desert landscape.
Biking enthusiasts can explore various trails offering scenic views. However, the terrain is rugged and requires careful navigation.

Mountain biking here offers a thrilling experience but demands advanced skills due to steep slopes and rocky paths.

The park's remote location means cyclists should be well-prepared with supplies as amenities are sparse in this area.

Cyclists must adhere strictly to trail rules for their safety since wildlife encounters may occur during rides.

While cycling at night isn't prohibited, it poses significant risks given the challenging topography of the region.

Remember that weather conditions can change rapidly; always check forecasts before embarking on any ride within these boundaries.
Birdwatchers can enjoy spotting a variety of species such as hawks, eagles and waterfowl. The park's remote location offers minimal disturbance for birds, making it an ideal spot for birding enthusiasts. Bird lovers may also participate in the annual Christmas Bird Count event held within the area.

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
June 9 Great fishing and camping by David Versteeg
park review stars; one to five Camp Grounds well maintained. Fishing was great for cat fish and Crappie. Need to be careful of the snakes and pay attention. Fishing good from the bank and great from a boat.
June 23 Do Not stay in Teepee by Jeffry Stoker
park review stars; one to five We had a rattlesnake crawl into the we were staying in and curl up next to the twin mattress. The Teepees are not secured at the bottom. We had lizards and snakes in our Teepee. Not worth the cost. Ranger still has not called us back about the rattlesnake. We elected to get a hotel instead.
May 23 Gem Stone Among the Rocks by Claude 05-23-10
park review stars; one to five Lake Owyhee as is now known. Is a Gem itself the area abounds with wildlife as noted and usually easily seen.
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Nearby Hotels

1. Start by getting on I:84 E from W Front St and S Capitol Blvd.
2. Follow I:84 E for approximately 45 miles until you cross into Oregon.
3. Take Exit 376 toward Ontario/Nyssa onto US:20/US-26/OR201 N.
4. Continue driving north on OR201 for about 10 miles until you reach Nyssa.
5. In Nyssa, turn left onto US Highway 20/Ontario:Nyssa Hwy and continue to follow it eastward towards Vale.

From Vale:
6a: If coming via Main Street (OR202), head south out of town following signs for Lake Owyhee State Park/Vale-Owyhee Reservoir/Lake Recreation Area.
7a: After around a mile or so take a slight right at Malheur County Road #78/Fairview Cemetery Rd then after another half-mile make another slight right continuing along Fairview Cemetery Rd/Malheur County Road #78.


6b: If taking A St West/Main Street East (Highway No.#26) instead of turning off this road stay straight heading South-East as it becomes Valley View Drive/Southside Boulevard which will lead directly to Lake Owhyee Dam where there are multiple access points including boat ramps etc.

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