Visit Boysen State Park

Boysen Reservoir State Park juxtaposes fascinating desert with hundreds of acres of deep blue water, creating a surreal landscape for boaters, anglers, picnickers and campers to enjoy. There’s no place like Boysen to cool off and enjoy the outdoors during the heat of summer and the fishing is great all year round.

Learn more at the Boysen State Park website or by calling (307) 876-2796.

Explore the Boysen Reservoir On the Boysen Reservoir Driving Tour or the Old Yellowstone Highway.

Camp

 

The Lower and Upper Wind River Campgrounds have shade trees, grass and interesting geological features.  There are numerous sites and some can be reserved in advance. Brannon and Tamarask campgrounds are at the north end of the reservoir near a boat launching area. There is a protected bay for tying up boats, a sandy beach, trees and picnic shelters. Tough Creek Campground is on a peninsula with a boat launching area and close access to the lake. Loop 1 and Loop 2 are on the west side of the reservoir and offer a limited number of sites, a boat launch and easy access to the lake.

Fish

 

Ice Fishing on Boysen,
Ice Fishing on Boysen, Jennie Hutchinson

Fishing is perhaps what Boysen is known for best. Several state-record fish have been caught in the reservoir. Diverse is perhaps the best way to describe the fishery. Anglers can catch walleye, sauger, perch, crappie, ling and other species, including largemouth bass, bluegill, stonecat, black bullhead and mountain whitefish. There are also non-game species like carp, flathead, lake and creek chubs and golden and sand shiners among others.

 

Whether you fish from the shore, a boat, or the ice, you’re bound to reel in something exciting.

You can get bait, food and fishing licenses at the marina at the north end of the lake or in Shoshoni.

Ice Fish

For the intrepid fishermen/women, Boysen is a popular spot for ice fishing. It varies each year, but usually the water begins to freeze in December and doesn’t start to thaw until the end of March.

Check out the Dam

Standing at 216 feet, with a spillway capacity at 20,000 cubic feet per second is the dam. Wind River Canyon was discovered in 1825 by the Ashley Fur Party. The original dam was built by Asmus Boysen in 1908—that’s where the park gets its name. You can still see part of the original dam adjacent to the tunnels in the Lower Wind River Campground. Boysen built a 710kw power plant at the site. Operations stopped in 1923 after a major flood filled the plant with silt. The existing dam was built in 1951 and the area became a state park in 1956.

 

Boysen Reservoir Driving Tour

View of Boysen Reservoir from above
Boysen Reservoir, Timothy Rockhold

For those with a penchant for fishing, dramatic scenery, birding, and prehistoric geology, the Boysen Reservoir Trail can’t be missed.   Explore Shoshoni, Boysen Reservoir State Park and Reservoir and Wind River Canyon.

Learn more about the 80- and 32-mile loops exploring the Boysen State Park area.