Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson

Horsetooth Reservoir Conditions

Park elevation: 5430'
Report last updated: 8/21/2017

Current Conditions

photo from park
The new Horsetooth Area Information Center, located in South Bay of Horsetooth Reservoir, is now open to the public. An official grand opening of the center is planned for spring of 2017.
Park situation

Daily entrance permits are available for purchase at the automated pay stations located in each park area. The automated pay stations accept credit and debit cards only; cash or checks are not accepted at the self-service automated pay stations.

Rangers no longer sell annual passes, day passes, or any other permit, including camping permits. Please go to the Horsetooth Area Information Center for permits and questions you may have.


Horsetooth Area Information Center Now Open!

The new Horsetooth Area Information Center, located in South Bay of Horsetooth Reservoir, is now open to the public. Visitors to the Horsetooth area can stop by the center for info on recreation areas, trails, camping, boating, fishing and more.

Front desk staff can be reached at 970-498-5610. The center will be open:

  • November: 9 AM - 4 PM, Monday-Saturday
  • December-February: 9 AM - 4 PM, Monday-Friday
  • March-October: 9 AM - 4 PM, 7 days a week
Fishing Regulations
  • Walleye.: Daily limit - 5 total (no size restriction)
  • Smallmouth and Largemouth bass: Daily limit - 5 total (size minimum is 12 inches; all bass in possession must be over 12 inches)
  • All species of trout in Horsetooth (rainbow, cut-bow, brown): Statewide limit of 4 total per day (no size restriction)
  • White bass, striped bass, or wipers: Statewide limit of 10 total per day (no size restriction)
  • Panfish (including bluegill, white and black crappie, and all sunfish): Statewide limit of 20 total per day (no size restriction)

Please refer to the regulation brochure printed by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife before you fish on any body of water. These regulations are for Horsetooth and the type of fish in Horsetooth. Other bodies of water around Horsetooth may have different species of fish and regulations specific to that body of water. It is your responsibility to know the regulations to every body of water you fish.

For more current conditions and stocking reports, visit the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website.

Send and receive messages from fellow fishermen and gain precious fishing knowledge! Join us at these fishing forums:

Water level and boat ramps

Boating Access Hours

Before traveling to one of our reservoirs, always check here first for the most current information.

We are required to inspect every vessel entering Carter Lake and Horsetooth Reservoir. That requires specific hours of operation for boating. No boat launching is permitted outside of these hours; however, boats already on the reservoirs may continue operation.

Horsetooth Reservoir Boat Ramp Hours:

May - September 6th Ramp Hours:

South Bay: 6am to 10pm, 7 days a week

Inlet Bay: 6am to 10pm, 7 days a week

Satanka: 6am to 10pm, 7 days a week

September 7th - September 30th

South Bay: 6am to 10pm, 7 days a week

Inlet Bay: 6am to 10pm, 7 days a week

Satanka: 8am to 6pm, Thursday & Sunday

                8am to 9pm, Friday & Saturday

                Closed Monday through Wednesday


Water elevation

Water Temperature: 72°F

Percent Full: 87.1%

Maximum Water Elevation: 5,430.0 FT above sea level

Current Water Elevation: 5,419.42 FT above sea level


Attention campers: If you do not have a reservation for a campsite, you will need to visit the Horsetooth Park Headquarters located at 4200 West County Road 38E to purchase your campsite. . A reservation for camping is highly recommended. You can make reservations from 180 days to 1 day in advance of the arrival date at or by calling the reservation call center at 1-800-397-7795.


  • Non-electric Campsite: $15
  • Electric Campsite: $25
  • Full hookup Campsite: $30
  • Camper Cabin: $60
  • Boat In Campsite $20


  • Non-electric Campsites: $15
  • Electric Campsites: $15
  • Full hookup Campsites: $20
  • Camper Cabins: $30
  • Boat In Campsites: Closed



This time of year we have many deer, foxes, and coyotes in the area. Please use caution while driving.

In Larimer County, there is an increased risk of wildlife that may be carrying rabies. Please follow County regulations and keep all pets on a leash. All personal pets should be current on rabies vaccinations before venturing into the wild.

If you see a suspect animal acting out of the ordinary or becoming unusually aggressive in the park, do not hesitate to call a ranger. Rangers can be reached for this purpose by calling 911. Be prepared to give a detailed account of your location to the 911 dispatcher. Your safety and your pet's safety is of great concern to us.

Park events

See the event calendar for additional activities.

See the Parks and Open Lands event calendar.
Background Image: Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson. All rights reserved.