Lake Owyhee
State Park

Near Ontario, Oregon, United States

Park Overview

Lake Owyhee State Park is a remote oasis on the eastern edge of Oregon that offers camping and boating on the shore of a scenic desert canyon reservoir. The park contains two campgrounds along Owyhee Reservoir, a 53-mile-long lake that fills a narrow, deep canyon brimming with colorful volcanic rock formations.

The Gordon Gulch Day-use Area is open year-round and includes picnic tables and a boat ramp. Many boaters return each year to explore the desert canyon and rugged mountains. Some of the reservoir's incredible geology is visible only by boat. Anglers are awarded excellent warm water catches, especially large mouth bass, white and black crappie.  The reservoir also has catfish and is occasionally stocked with rainbow trout. Look for golden eagles, coyotes, ground squirrels, rabbits, pronghorn antelope, mule deer, and wild horses (watch out for rattlesnakes, too). You might even see California bighorn sheep or a mountain lion.

Camping

Campers may book reservations 6 months in advance for the rest of the season at oregonstateparks.reserveamerica.com

McCormack Campground (Seasonal: April 15-Oct.31)

  • 29 electrical sites with water
  • Nine tent sites with water nearby
  • Two sites accessible to campers with disabilities
  • Hot showers and flush toilets
  • RV dump station
  • Boat ramp 
  • Firewood and ice for sale

Indian Creek Campground

  • 22 electrical sites with water (two accessible)
  • Two cabins (open March 1 - Nov 15; one pet-friendly, one accessible)
  • Boat ramp (water level permitting)
  • Firewood and ice for sale seasonally
  • Potable water available seasonally

Know Before You Go

  • Water may be off before April 15 and after Oct. 15, depending on weather. 
  • Boat docks may be out of the water during summer months depending on level of reservoir. Check the Bureau of Reclamation website for water levels. Please check park notices for current conditions.
  • No pay phones or cell phone service at the park.  
  • This is a remote park. The nearest emergency services are 33 miles away, in Nyssa. The closest hospital is in Ontario, about an hour drive from the park.
  • For your safety, follow park rules and boating safety regulations. 
  • The road to Lake Owyhee Reservoir is narrow and moderately steep in places. Drive slowly and be prepared to yield to other campers and boats as you enter and leave the area.
Effective Jun 27, 2022 – Jan 31, 2023
All courtesy docks at the Indian Creek Campground are out of the water. The Gordon Gulch boat launch and docks are also out of the water at this time. Please be aware this is in response to extremely low water levels in the lake and water levels are not controlled by Oregon State Parks.
Effective Jun 2, 2022
The fish grinder at Indian Creek is not operational. At this time we do not have an estimated date for when it will be up and running again.

mdi-white-balance-sunny Open for day use Year Round mdi-tent Open for camping Mar 1 – Nov 14 mdi-car-side First-come, first-served camping mdi-cellphone Call for info: 800-551-6949
Call park: 541-339-2331
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Amenities & Features

History

Lake Owyhee State Park is a remote oasis catering to camping and boating on the shore of a scenic desert canyon reservoir.

The area was obtained by lease agreement from the Bureau of Reclamation in 1958. Owyhee Lake was formed by the construction of an irrigation dam on the Owyhee River in 1932. The Owyhee River derives its name from Hawaiian laborers who were fatally attacked by Snake Indians while in the service of a Hudson's Bay Company fur trapping expedition to the area in 1819. Owyhee was a variation of Hawaii commonly used in the early 19th Century. 

Brochures and Maps

mdi-file-pdf-box Lake Owyhee & Succor Creek campground brochure and map

Photos