September 2006

Fishing Talk Radio | New Product Reviews

Find your Hotel Room Worldwide



RVers, Horse Riders, Anglers: Consider These Lakes

Small And Not Too Busy

By Margie Anderson

Looking for a good place to fish from a small boat? Iíve got a couple great ideas for you, and both of them are right smack in the middle of the state.

Horsethief Lake

Horsethief Lake is at the top of the Bradshaw Mountains, just past Crown King. The turn-off from Interstate 17 is only an hour or so north of Phoenix, but those last 30-some miles from the freeway to the lake will take you about three hours.

The gravel road is in good shape, and you donít usually need a 4x4, but you do have to take your time as it twists and doubles back on itself going up the mountain.

Youíll climb about 6,000 feet and end up in a beautiful Ponderosa Forest. In fact, the Bradshaws have the largest stand of Ponderosa pines in the country.

The lake itself is small at about three and a half acres, but there is a very serviceable launch ramp and plenty of vegetation to fish. You can also walk out onto the dam and drop a line there, and in fact, that is where we saw a man and his daughters catch some bass when we were there.

There is a very good path all the way around the lake, giving you excellent access to fishing anywhere on shore. Electric motors are allowed on the lake, but I wouldnít attempt to tow a big boat up that road.

Horsethief has bass, sunfish, and catfish. Remember the vegetation and bring lures that will go through weeds. Nearby is Hazlett Hollow Campground with 15 shady sites that have tables, campfire rings, and even three-sided, roofed shelters with concrete floors where you can roll out your sleeping bags.

The campground is open May through October. There are two vault toilets, one handicapped accessible, and drinking water is available, but there are no hook-ups. The fee is just $6 per night.

Besides fishing, the campground offers easy access to several good hikes. There is a store in Crown King in case you run out of anything or want to buy some souvenirs or maps.

Dead Horse Ranch State Park

Dead Horse Ranch State Park is right next to the Verde River near Cottonwood. It is open all year Ďround and has three big lagoons, two of which have fish in them.

In the Ranger Station by the entrance you can see photos of some of the big bass and sunfish that have been caught there. No powered boats are allowed, which makes it wonderful for canoes and kayaks.

There are wide graveled paths all the way around both of the fishing lagoons, and every now and then, little concrete platforms jut out past the cattails. These have railings to lean on while you cast out.

There are lots of cattails and tules around the lagoons, but there are still plenty of places to fish from shore. If you have a little boat, you can go out and cast around the island.

The park has tons of campsites, including group-use areas, and there is electricity, water, picnic tables, grills, and even shower facilities. RVers will love the fact that there is also a dump station.

There are also facilities for horses, and you can even corral them overnight if you call ahead and make arrangements. Lots of trails in the area will keep hikers, mountain bikers, and horse riders happy when they arenít fishing.

For information or to inquire about horse arrangements, call them at (928) 634-5283. The nearby town of Cottonwood has absolutely everything you are likely to need, so donít worry if you forget to pack something.

Latest Issue: Click Here
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
Advertise with AZBW
spinfish

Spinfish Online Magazine And Where to Fish Directory