Arizona Vacation

Lake Pleasant Arizona Near Phoenix

By Tony Subia

Picture of Lake Pleasant AZLake Pleasant AZ. © Robert Body

Lake Pleasant is a power boater's dream. As the largest lake in the Phoenix and Scottsdale area, load-up all your water recreation toys. You're in for a blast. Its pristine waters cover over 10,000 acres of water surface with 116 miles of shoreline. The average depth is 70-feet and the deepest point of 260 feet is at the dam.

The best part. It is located only 35 miles from downtown Phoenix.

Lake Pleasant Near Phoenix

Rev-up that speed boat and let it loose. Strap on those water-skis. Power-up the jet skis. If you prefer the casual pace go sailing. Rent a house boat. Turn-up the music and fire-up the grill. It's party time on Lake Pleasant, Arizona. Just behave yourself, this is a family lake and safety policy is strictly enforced.

Jump-in the kayak and explore the coves. Runabout along the lake shoreline and keep an eye for roaming wild burros. You may catch a glimpse of Arizona Bobcats and nesting Bald Eagles that call Lake Pleasant home. If you feel the urge, hit the shore and do a bit of hiking.

Lake Pleasant Boating

Lake Pleasant AZ is open 24 hours all 365 days a year. At the main entrance of the lake, there is a large parking lot for 700 vehicles as well as a 10-lane and 4-lane boat ramp. Boat rentals are available at two marinas. But you don't need a boat to enjoy a day at the lake. Picnic with family and friends at several picnic areas. Hike or bike marked trails. Stroll through the Visitor and Desert Education center. Or dine indoors or outdoors at lakeside restaurants.

The tranquility of being on the boat late evenings and even all night brings relaxation after a hectic work week. Relish the brilliant evening sunset and when darkness comes, drop anchor. Take a swim in the moonlight. Drop a fishing line, catch a big catfish. And then slumber away right on the boat under bright stars.

Party Time At Lake Pleasant

Fun at Lake Pleasant can be all that you want it to be. It's a lake for all ages for all activities. Camping, fishing, picnicking, boating, dining at water-side restaurants. It's also time for the younger folks during popular holidays and yes.....spring break for the college crowd. This video saves a lot of words. Have fun. Be safe. Be responsible.

Lake Pleasant Marinas

There are two major marinas at Lake Pleasant. Whether you dock your boat at the marinas, trailer your own or rent a boat, there are plenty of amenities including fueling docks, boat repair services, convenience stores, fishing stuff, boat slips and restaurants with water-side bars from where you can enjoy watching the action.

Scorpion Bay Marina. A floating community with both covered and uncovered boat slips. Take advantage of its boat rentals including power boats, fishing boats, runabouts and pontoon boats. Find the convenience of a general store stocked with goodies and a deli. Dine dockside at Dillon's BBQ Restaurant and Bar. You'll find everything you need for a fun-filled time at the lake. Scorpion Bay Website.

Pleasant Harbor Marina and RV Resort. A full service marina with with wet slips, a convenience store, dry storage, boat repair center, fueling station, boat rentals and a dockside bar and grille. Its 5-Star RV Resort offers 254 spaces with full RV hookup and 40 partial RV hookup sites. Enjoy the comforts of a barbecue area, showers, bathrooms and laundry facilities. Take advantage of its clubhouse and recreation amenities.

Camping At Lake Pleasant

Camping sites are in abundance. Campers and picnickers can find both day and overnight campgrounds able to accommodate large and small groups. All camping sites have a covered ramada, picnic table, barbecue grill, fire ring, restroom and shower facilities. Only "developed" sites have water, electricity and a dump station. Nominal fees apply for all camping sites.

At Roadrunner Campground and Picnic Area there are 72 camping sites. All campsites are Developed with water, electrical hookups and dump station. RV and tent camping is accommodated.

Desert Tortoise Campground has 76 campsites of which 25 are developed, 25 are semi-developed, and 10 are tent-only sites. Large groups can reserve the Desert Tortoise Group Campground with a commitment of 10 units.

Fishing At Lake Pleasant

Anglers have experienced trophy-size catches at the lake with a wide variety of sport fish including largemouth bass, striper bass, crappie, white bass, channel catfish, and talapia. The salt water species of striper bass are introduced to the lake as water containing striper fry and eggs is pumped into the lake from the Colorado River via the Central Arizona Project canal.

Several creeks and washes feed into the lake. Feeding points are hot fishing spots. They include Humbug Creek, Castle Creek and Cole's Wash. Although fishing can be good from the shore, it takes a boat to get to the heavy action locations. Lake Pleasant features the best bass fishing of all other lakes in the Phoenix area.

Directions To Lake Pleasant

From Phoenix. Take I-17 (Black Canyon Freeway) north and exit on Carefree Highway (Exit 223) and head west. The road becomes State Route 74, also known as Lake Pleasant Road. Travel west for about 15 miles and turn north on Castle Hot Springs Road. Continue for about 2 miles to the park's main entrance. To reach Pleasant Harbor Marina, turn north on Pleasant Harbor Road for about 1.5 miles to the main entrance. Nominal fees are charged.

There is a second entrance to the lake about 3 miles past the main park entrance on Castle Hot Springs Road. You'll find access to the 4 lane boat ramp, shoreline camping areas and the Cottonwood day-use only picnic area which provides restroom convenience.

Map of How To Get To Lake PleasantLake Pleasant Map. Compliments of Maricopa County Parks

Detailed Public Facility Maps

Related Lake Pleasant Links

For More Information

The lake often exceeds its capacity during the busy summer months and holiday weekends. Arrive early during those periods. Modest entry fees per vehicle and watercraft apply. Camping and ramada rental fees vary depending upon the site. For lake rules and guidelines, visit the Lake Pleasant Regional Park website.

Current Camping and Usage Fees

Lake Pleasant Regional Park
41835 North Castle Hot Springs Road
Morristown, AZ 85342
Contact Station 928-501-1710

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