Clark State Fishing Lake
Clark State Lake - All photos on this page by Jim Mason
|Approaching through flat farmlands and pasturelands,
visitors are pleasantly surprised to discover Clark State Fishing Lake nestled in the deep
Bluff Creek canyon. Several short drives or walks, on both sides of the lake, provide
scenic vistas of this rugged western Kansas treasure.
The mixed grass prairie hilltops and canyon sides are dominated by yucca and aromatic
sumac. Burrows of kangaroo rats are seen under the yucca clumps and along the roadside
soil banks. You may spot coyote tracks in the dust; watch for these wily predators in
early morning and late evening. Interesting reptiles include collared and Texas horned
lizards and western rattlesnakes. Lark sparrows are found along the roads, and rock wrens
find suitable nesting habitat along the steep canyon walls.
At the far northeast corner of the lake is the Jay R. Wood Memorial Nature
Trail, which crosses Bluff Creek on this bridge and then makes a loop through tall
cottonwood bottomlands. Red-headed woodpeckers, white-breasted nuthatches, and
other woodland birds are found along the trail. Poison ivy is prevalent in the
undergrowth, so those who are sensitive should beware.
The lake is attractive to ducks and geese, and ospreys are common during the fall
migration. Herons, gulls, and terns are also seen. During summer, both eastern and western
kingbirds nest in the campground trees and noisily defend their territories.
Panoramic view of Clark State Lake - Photo collage by Jim Mason
|User fees, Shelter House, Restroom, Water available, Boat Ramps.|
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Wood Memorial Nature Trail (1 mile). The gravel road leading from the trailhead to
K-94 highway (2.2 miles loop) is an enjoyable hike.
Click the icon to find a birding list for Clark County.
Click the icon to locate nearby Geocaches
|Directions: From Kingsdown (on U.S. 54 Highway, 20 miles SE of Dodge City), follow K-94 south
10 miles. The highway ends at the lake.
For a Google Map of the area,
The responsible entity for management of Clark State
Lake is the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks
Contact them at (620)
227-8609 if you have specific questions about use or management of this site. 1,240 acres
You may download the KDWPT brochure on Clark State
Fishing Lake from
their web site.
Funded by the
Chickadee Checkoff Program
Click here for a brochure!
Kansas web site
the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks
Re-publication of site content in any form other than for personal use
requires written permission. If you are a Kansas resident, please
assist with this and other wildlife viewing and conservation programs
by contributing to the Chickadee Checkoff on your state tax form.
Questions or comments about Natural Kansas may be directed to
Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism