Milford Lake, KS

  • Harvey County West Park

    Developed in the late 1930's in the sand hills of western Harvey County on the Little Arkansas River. The 310 acre park is heavily wooded. West Park offers a softball diamond, playground equipment, enclosed and open-air shelters for rent, swimming beach and rental boats. There is a bait shop ... Harvey County West Park
  • Harvey County East Park

    Thirteen hundred acres large and located in Eastern Harvey County on the edge of the Flint Hills 6 miles east of Newton, KS.. It has a 314 acre tree lined lake which offers anglers a variety of fishing options. There are two swimming beaches, sand volleyball courts, playgrounds, a softball ... Harvey County East Park
  • Mushroom Rock State Park

    Mushroom Rock State ParkMushroom Rock State Park is a geological phenomenon of sandstone spheres balanced on softer pedestals of sandstone. The power of erosion weathered away the softer portions of the sandy rock. The spheres of the naturally cemented portions of the sandstone are what we see today at this 5 acre park. ... Mushroom Rock State Park

Milford Lake Campingmore

Milford State Park
Milford State ParkMilford State Park is a 1,084-acre multipurpose recreation area located at the southeast end of Milford Reservoir.

Boaters, fisherman, and water enthusiasts will find the areas serviced by a full service marina. Showers, a trailer dump station, restrooms, boat ramps, picnic sites, a beach and bathhouse, and reservable single family or large group shelters are all available.

Also located in the park are five Federal campgrounds with a total of 123 electric and water hook-ups. Thirty-one of these sites also include sewer hook-ups. One hundred two improved primitive campsites are also available throughout the park.

Cedar Point Campground42 Electric & Water

9 improved primitive
Woodland Hills Campground30 Electric & Water
66 improved primitive
Hickory Hollow Campground31 Full Hookups
Walnut Grove Campground 27 improved primitive
Prairie View Campground20 Electric & Water

Firewood is available and on sale by Milford Friends Group members. Shower buildings are available at Woodland Hills and Walnut Grove Campgrounds. Don't forget to visit the Milford Nature Center and Fish Hatchery which are located below the dam.

Milford Lake Fishingmore

Milford Fishing
Milford FishingThe following fishing tips should improve angler's success in catching the lake's more popular fish species. These suggestions are of a general nature and fishing conditions can change rapidly due to weather and water conditions.

Walleye concentrate along the face of the dam during early April to spawn. Following the spawn, Farnum Creek flat, the mud points near School Creek and the flats near the military marina are good areas. During the summer, walleye often are taken off the state park points in 25 to 40 feet of water.

Nearly all of the brushy and rocky coves contain crappie, but the coves around Rolling Hills and Curtis Creek are traditional hot spots. Autumn finds the crappie back in the same haunts as in the spring. Ice fishing in winter in the Curtis Creek area often yields sizable strings of crappie.

Milford usually produces a white bass run in the Republican River each spring in late April or early May. In years when the river is high and turbid, a spawning run occurs off the face of the dam, rather than upriver. In summer, the white bass can be taken while trolling deep-diving lures across underwater drop offs. During the hot summer months, night fishing for white bass under lanterns or floating lights is popular. One of the best places for night fishing is Madison Point and along both sides of the Wakefield causeway.

The upper end of the lake above the Wakefield causeway has traditionally offered the best catfishing, but catfish are common throughout the reservoir. Most of the large flatheads are caught along the Wakefield causeway and in the standing timber in the upper end on set lines and live bait.

Nearly all the wooded coves that hold crappie also hold largemouth bass.

In general, any of the rocky points and banks in the lower half of the lake will harbor smallmouth, but the face of the dam has by far the highest density of this fish.

Milford Lake Huntingmore

Milford Hunting and Wildlife
Many game species are present on Milford Wildlife Area. Known mainly for its quail and pheasant populations. The area also has huntable populations of wild turkey, dove, squirrel, coyote, cottontail rabbits, prairie chicken, ducks, and geese. Though populations fluctuate from year to year, all of these species provide area hunters with a challenging outdoor experience.

A permanent 1,103 acre wildlife refuge has been established on the northern end of the reservoir for waterfowl management. The public hunting areas and the refuge are clearly posted.

Milford Wildlife Area also provides thousands of acres for wildlife viewing by hikers and other wildlife area users.

More than 15,000 acres of land is available for public hunting at Milford. Hunters will enjoy a variety of game including quail, pheasant, prairie chicken, duck, goose, rabbit, and squirrel. Trappers are also active throughout the season in pursuit of raccoon, muskrat, beaver and other furbearers.

South of the dam, the Geary County Fish and Game Association leases land from the Corps for use by local sportsmen. The association provides a trap range, hunter safety courses and sporting demonstrations.

Milford Lake Trailsmore

Milford Trails
Milford TrailsPipeline Trail - The beginning of a segmented trail system that links all of our campgrounds together and acts as a shortcut between areas.

Waterfall Trail - A .6 mile walk that leads you through woodland and prairie habitats. A man made waterfall and pond is located at the trailhead.

Crystal Trail - This trail is 2.2 miles. It passes by an old quarry where small geode rocks can be found. Deer viewing is good along open fields and by food plots. Bald Eagle watching is excellent from November through March along the water's edge.

Eagle Ridge Equestrian Trail - Over 8 miles of horseback riding on some of the most scenic and diverse areas that Milford Lake has to offer.

Wildlife Viewing Tower and Trail - The tower is accessed from a wrap-around staircase, which rises 21' to the top platform. Excellent wildlife viewing is made available with nearby food plots. The best time to visit is near dusk and dawn when most animals are active. Stargazing is excellent on clear nights. Bring your binoculars!

Old River Bluff Trail - 1.5 miles. This trail joins Milford State Parks's Eagle Ridge Trail with Junction City's Riverwalk Trail. The trail allows for a one way trail ride, trail walk or bike ride of 17.5 miles. Since it is a linear trail, it requires that ou come back the way you came so the distance will actually double. A trailer parking area is available below the dam. Look for a horse trail campground in the near future that will make all three of these trails even nicer.

Milford Lake ORV Areasmore

Milford Off Road Vehicles
The School Creek ORV area consists of approximately 287 acres. It is restricted to vehicles that are 50 inches wide or less. Full size 4-wheel drive vehicles and dune buggies are not allowed to operate on the trails. Kansas State safety regulations are in effect in the area, which includes mandatory eyewear for all operators and mandatory helmets for juveniles. ORV vehicles that are not licensed for the highway cannot be operated on roadways outside of the riding area. The primitive park is free of charge and has a staging/parking lot area. Trails can be accessed from the east or west sides of the parking lot. A vault toilet and refuse dumpster is provided at the parking lot. Since the park area has limited maintenance, it?s up to all of the users of the area to help keep the litter picked up and to follow the rules.

As usage of the trail system has grown over the years another sport, mountain biking has gained a foothold in the area. Mountain biking enthusiasts have told us the trails are great for their sport as well. ORV riding and mountain biking have coexisted for several years now along the trail system without incident. The Milford Lake staff however cautions all users of the ORV area to please keep safety in mind and remember there are other users in the area.

Please help keep everyone safe.

Directions to the area:
from Junction City go 2 miles NW on KS 57
Hwy. then go 4 miles W on KS 244 Hwy.;
then 8 miles N on County Road 837; turn E onto
Luttman Road and follow it. Luttman Road dead
ends at the ORV staging/parking lot.

Milford Lake Wildlife Areasmore

Milford Wetlands Restoration Project
Milford Wetlands Restoration ProjectThe Milford Wetlands Restoration Project provided for an estimated 2,300 acres of wetland habitat suitable for usage by waterfowl and shorebird populations as a migratory stopover and as a production area. In addition it provides additional fur-bearer, game and non-game wildlife species associated with wetland habitat type and restore a high-quality habitat suitable for game and non-game fish spawning and nursery areas.

Opportunities and experiences for all outdoor enthusiasts from hunters and anglers to birders and hikers will be greatly enhanced by this project. The potential for expanded economic impact will exist for the communities surrounding the lake as current and new businesses provide for the needs of anticipated increased visitors. The modification will restore wetlands in a chain of naturally occurring land cells currently dominated by the plant species such as cattails and annual and early succession stages of vegetation. A wetland cell in honor of State Representative Steve Lloyd of Clay Center, a strong supporter of the project who died of cancer in April, 2005, has been designated on the wetland project. The Steve Lloyd Refuge offers a viewing area where many shorebirds and waterfowl can be seen.

This restoration project will change marginal wetlands and poorly drained areas of croplands subject to flooding into dependable and manageable wetlands. Construction of these wetlands will restore fish and wildlife values that have been lost. Providing additional wetlands is important, since historically, wetland areas, as well as their functions and values, have been in decline. Kansas has lost over 50% of its wetlands. The project seizes on an opportunity to provide good quality habitat during periods of peak waterfowl and shorebird migration, increase local production of a wide range of wetland wildlife species, create the third largest wetland area in the State of Kansas, and enhance a wetland complex which is consistent with the goals of the North American Waterfowl Management Plan.

The completed project will increase water management capability within these areas, which allows the development of consistently high quality wetland habitat. Hydrologic control is the major factor in the establishment, enhancement, and long-term management of the wetland ecosystems. Rather than depending upon the variations of existing natural cycles ranging from annual flood to drought conditions, wetland areas having water control structures combined with a supplemental water source will allow for reliable and controlled ponding of water. Consequently, the creation and maintenance of a range of seasonal habitat types will be possible under a comprehensive management plan.

Milford Lake Fishing Reportsmore

Milford Lake Fish Report

This is just to remind you that fishing reports are given with the best intentions to help you catch fish. And do remember fishing reports given a few hours ago can change due to a whole list of circumstances. But ---- they are still one of the best ways to determine if fish are biting or not. You might consider calling someone local to find out if the report is still current. Otherwise go and have a good time in participating in the challenge of catching some fish while you have fun fishing!

And if your at your destination for a day or more check out the LASR menu above for local events, attractions and businesses that are there to help make your trip more enjoyable. And thanks to those who do their best to give us great fishing information!


Milford Lake Fishing Forecastmore

Milford Lake Fishing Forcast
2011 Milford Reservoir Fishing Forecast

WIPER— Good. 4.3 million fry were stocked in 2010, producing a fair year class without fingerling stockings. 55% of wipers sampled were over 15\", while numbers over 20\" increased to 18%. Trophy wiper over 25\" were not sampled. The possibility of catching a real trophy does still exist, though, and the lake record remains at 17lbs!!!

WHITE BASS— Fair/Good. White bass density decreased from 2009, which was the highest ever recorded for Milford. Numbers of white bass 9\"-12\" was 36%, though, double that of 2009. White bass 12\"-18\" were 33% of the sample, and the 2010 year class appears strong. Fall fishing in 2010 was excellent, and it should be worthwhile throughout 2011.

CATFISH— Good. Channel catfish abundance was highest for 17\"-24\" fish, and a good 2010 year class was also evident. The channel cat creel limit remains 10/day. Flathead numbers remain constant, and provide a quality angling opportunity. Flathead creel limit remains 5/day. Blue cat numbers were highest for 18\"-26\" individuals. Although only in its second year, the reduced creel limit on blues appears to be maintaining the numbers of brood fish. The blue catfish creel remains 5/day. The lake record blue cat still stands in the upper 50 lb range, and natural reproduction continues to maintain the population at desirable levels. Catfish anglers at Milford should have a productive 2011, with the chance of hooking into a real monster blue as good as ever, if not better.

BLACK BASS— Good. Largemouth abundance is slightly higher than the previous sample, with more 8\"-12\" fish and improved recruitment. Spotted bass abundance is still relatively low. Spots over 15\" are available for anglers primarily in the southern third of the reservoir. Smallmouth numbers are similar to the two previous samples, but those over 17\" are the most abundant since 2001. A new state record smallmouth bass of 6.88lbs was caught in 2010, with three others that broke the old record, also from Milford! Black bass anglers should again experience frequent success, with the chance of catching a trophy smallmouth or spotted bass a real possibility. (15 inch length limit)

WALLEYE— Fair/Good. Legal fish over 18\" increased, for only the third time in the last 10 years, though. 30% of walleye sampled were over 18\", with 11% over 20\". 4.5 million fry and 128,000 fingerlings were stocked in 2010, resulting in a poor year class as of fall sampling. Legal and sub-legal walleye, 34% between 15\"-18\", should provide good fishing in 2011, and with good growth, should allow for ample harvest. (18 inch length limit)

CRAPPIE— Good. Crappie abundance increased due to the numbers of 5\"-8\" fish, however few were over 12\". 22% sampled were over 10\", though. The 2010 and\'09 year classes are good, but below the 2007 and 2008 year classes that were the best ever recorded. These 4 year classes should provide good angling during the Spring spawn, and during the Fall transition period, as in late 2010. Milford anglers should have good success during the prime crappie periods in 2011.

Thanks to the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism - Fishing

Milford Lake Organizationsmore

Kansas Walleye Association

You are invited to the five scheduled tournaments at some of the finest lakes in Kansas.

The KWA welcomes anglers of all ages. It is tournament fishing for fun. Many of our teams consist of men and women, parent and child, grandparent and grandchild, cousins, friends and co-workers.

The 2013 KWA Season starts in May and concludes in mid-June.

Address: 1314 N. Wilshire Drive, Hutchinson, KS 67501
Phone: 620-662-0296
Our Email:

Milford Lake Map

Milford Lake Information

Fees: Park Permits Required

Location: 5 miles north of Junction City on Hwy K-57

Contact: 785-238-5714

Core of Engineers News

Lake Area Events

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