Elk City Lake, KS

Elk City Lake, Kansas

Elk City Reservoir offers a wide variety of outdoor recreation and forms a lake featuring a shore line nearly 50 miles long, containing over 4,500 acres of water and 12,000 acres of wildlife, in addition to the State Park. The prominent feature of the landscape is the precipitous limestone bluff known as Table Mound. In autumn, the native hardwoods bring an abundance of color to the area, as well. Opportunities include hunting, fishing, camping, boating, swimming, hiking and picnicking.

Elk City Lake offers three attractive park areas open year round with picnicking and camping sites both with and without electricity. The parks also include swimming areas, boat launching ramps, water hydrants, sanitary facilities, showers, fireplaces, playgrounds and group shelters.

Two of the six hiking trails located at Elk City Reservoir are noted for being the first trails in the state of Kansas to receive the National Trails designation. The scenic Elk River Hiking Trail comprises fifteen miles from the west edge of the dam to the bridge on Elk River.

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Elk City Lake Fishing

Elk City Lake Fishing
Elk City Lake FishingElk City Reservoir is located on the Elk River, a tributary of the Verdigris, in Montgomery County, Kansas, and offers good to excellent fishing opportunities for channel catfish, white bass, crappie, flathead catfish, largemouth bass and saugeye. Hook and line and trot line fisherman experience good success for channel catfish and flatheads in the reservoir during all seasons of the year. Spring fishing for spawning crappie occurs in the coves and associated streams. White bass runs also occur in Elk River. The outlet area provides good to excellent fishing during moderate releases. A handicap access fishing dock is located in the state park area.

Special length or creel limits may be in effect for some fish species. Check the Kansas Fishing Regulations Summary and all posted notices before fishing. Angler access is permitted from April 1 through September 1 on the refuge area.

Elk City Lake Hunting

Elk City Lake Hunting
The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks has a license to approximately 12,240 acres of project area for wildlife management and public hunting. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers oversees 1,600 acres of the area for wildlife purposes. Wildlife game species commonly found in the Elk City Lake area include bobwhite quail, cottontail rabbit, mourning dove, fox squirrel, white-tailed deer, turkey, and various species of ducks and geese. The surrounding expanses of grass and wooded hillsides support some of the best quail populations in Kansas.

Large numbers of ducks use the many shallow flats in the upper end of the reservoir, and goose hunters find excellent hunting on the wildlife area. Area deer hunters will have excellent opportunities on the numerous tributaries and wooded borders of the crop fields. Wild turkeys were reintroduced into the area in 1983, and their numbers are increasing. Common furbearers include beaver, raccoon, bobcat, coyote, gray fox, opossum, mink and muskrat. Excellent squirrel hunting can be found in the numerous oak hickory and pecan groves.

Steel shot is required for all waterfowl hunting.
No holes or pits may be dug for blinds.

Portions of wildlife areas open to the public are marked with "Public Hunting Area" signs. Gravel, township, and country dirt roads provide access to the areas. All major roads entering wildlife management areas are marked with large white signs with black letters stating "Wildlife Area."

The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks urges all sportsmen to respect all posted signs in the areas, and requests them not to trespass on private adjoining property.

No hunting is permitted in developed recreational areas on the lake, in the vicinity of the dam and other project structures, and within the designated boundaries of the Waterfowl Refuge.

Elk City Lake Camping

Elk City Parks
Elk City ParksAccess roads lead into three attractive park areas offering picnicking and camping sites (with and without electricity), swimming areas, boat launching ramps, water hydrants, sanitary facilities, showers, fireplaces, playgrounds, and group shelters.

Elk City State Park is located in the Osage Questas of southeastern Kansas, where thick oak-hickory woodlands meet rolling meadows of big bluestem and Indian grass. The State Park has a full complement of camping and boating facilities, but it is perhaps best known for its hiking trails. The park tself boasts 4.5 miles of trails, and the Army Corps of Engineers manages the scenic Elk River Hiking Trail covers 15 miles from the west edge of the dam to the Highway 160 bridge on the Elk River.

The camping area has 95 modern sites with 30 or 50 amp electric and water hookup. Eleven sites include sewer hookup, modern restrooms with showers, trailer sewage dump stations, group shelter, fishing piers, handicap fishing dock, and playground facilities.
Day Use: The Day Use Area has a swimming beach, picnic area, group shelter, basketball court, sand volleyball court, playground, fishing pier, restroom, and a three lane boat ramp.

Camping is permitted in the state park campground and along Table Mound Hiking Trail south of the county road. Toilets are available at Memorial Overlook Trailhead near the dam and the state park trailhead.

Corps of Engineers Parks:

Card Creek - Card Creek campground is located on Card Creek for those campers who like to "camp on the river banks." This is a favorite campground for those campers who just like to get away. Four primitive campsites have been recently added. Other improvements are always in the making. Facilities include Designated Campsites/Electricity/No Water, Restrooms, Drinking Water, Trailer Dump Station, Picnic Area, Hiking Nature Trail, Boat Ramp/Dock.

Park Open Year Round
4 Sites/No Elec/No Water, Fee $8.00; 16 Sites/Elec/No Water, Fee $12.00

Outlet Channel Area - This campground is located just north of the dam. Outlet Channel campground is for those campers who just want to get back to nature. Facilities include: Designated Campsites/No Elec/No Water, Drinking Water, Restrooms, Trailer Dump Station, Picnic Area,

Park Open: March 29 - November 3
15 Sites/No Elec/No Water, Fee $8.00

Elk City Lake Hiking

Elk City Lake Hiking Trails
Elk City Lake Hiking TrailsElk City Lake is well known for its six scenic trails: the Table Mound Hiking Trail (2 3/4 miles), mile-long Post Oak Self-Guided Nature Trail, Green Thumb Nature Trail (2/3 mile), Elk River Hiking Trail, Squaw Creek all-weather/handicap accessible multi-purpose trail, and a Hiking Trail at Card Creek Recreation Area. These trails meander through the colorful oak and hickory forest surrounding the lake and lead the hiker through some of the most interesting rock formations in Kansas while providing spectacular views of the lake and Elk River. Many people have hiked the trail system in Kansas. The Post Oak, Table Mound, and the Elk River Trails have been designated National Recreation Trails under the U.S. Department of the Interior's National Trail System.

The Eagle Rock Mountain Bike Trail is approximately 4 miles long and begins with a loop through the big sycamore and oak trees along the Elk River just north of the reservoir outlet. This gives way to a demanding trek through the trees and the ice age boulders that cover the hillside portion of the trial. The third segment of the trail winds through the tall native grasses in the center of the course framed by the river and hillside.
There is ample parking for large froups and excellent campground facilities near by. Out-of-town riders are urged to contact the Elk City State Park office ahead of time. Built exclusively for mountian biking, the trail is great fun for beginner and expert riders.

Elk City Lake Sightseeing

Elk City Lake Scenic Views
Elk City Lake Scenic ViewsOpportunities for sightseers and nature lovers are many at Elk City Lake. Topography of the Elk City Lake varies from steep slopes to broad rolling, open crop, and pasture land. A prominent feature of the landscape is the precipitous rock bluff of tableland that marks the north margin of the river valley for several miles above the dam site. Native trees and shrubs of the area include ash, birch, elm, hickory, oak, walnut, sycamore, dogwood, hawthorn, redbud, deciduous holly, and sumac. In addition, a myriad of wild mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates add greatly to the vitality and natural heritage of the area.

Bird watchers, photographers, and wildlife enthusiasts will enjoy the many different species of non-game birds and animals on the area. The huge pileated woodpecker is common among the mature trees along the Elk River.
A solar-powered wildlife feeder attracts many species of birds and animals in the park. Wintering waterfowl feeding in the wildlife refuge along Hwy 160 provide spectacular viewing in spring and late fall.

Elk City Lake Fishing Reports

Elk City Lake Fishing

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!


Elk City Lake Organizations

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:

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