Lower Lake Mary
Sometimes it's a lake. Sometimes it's not. Lower Lake Mary, the smaller of Flagstaff's twin lakes, has a tendency to disappear during the long dry spells that periodically hit this area. When the lake has water in it, which actually is much of the time, its banks are usually lined with anglers trying to catch the trout which the Arizona Game and Fish Department stocks here. If it stays full for a year or two, it will pick up a population of northern pike and catfish.
Access to this lake is directly off Forest Highway 3 (Lake Mary Road). The Lower Lake Mary Picnic Area at the northwestern end of the lake offers a great picnic location, no matter how high or low the water is, with wide open views and lots of tables and grills under ramadas.
During the warm season it is a good place to watch elk, deer, bald eagles, great blue herons and other waterfowl. This is also a good location to bring a kite or bicycle (Lake Mary Road, aka Forest Highway 3, is a popular road for bicycle fans and racers).
At a Glance
|Current Conditions:||Closing is at 6 p.m. during the operational season. During the winter, roads leading into the area are closed to vehicles.|
|Operational Hours:||Day-Use Area open as of April 30, 2021. Scheduled to close Oct. 11, 2021.|
|Fees:||Fees are required at the developed day-use areas on the lakes during the high-use season (generally mid-April through mid-October):|
|Open Season:||- Sep. 28|
|Restrictions:||Motorized boats: single electric motor or single gasoline engine limited to 10 horsepower. See Arizona Game & Fish Department Watercraft Rules and Regulations for additional information.|
|Closest Towns:||Flagstaff, AZ|
|Passes:||Recreation Resources Management (the Concessionaire for this site) offers a seasonal pass accepted at the Upper Lake Mary Boat Launch and Picnic Area, Lower Lake Mary Picnic Area, and the Narrows Boat Launch and Picnic Area special fee sites. The pass is only available at these special fee sites.|
|Operated By:||Flagstaff Ranger District 928-526-0866|
Location: 7 miles southeast of Flagstaff on paved roads.
GPS (Map): 35°06'44.0"N 111°34'56.6"W
Access: Take Lake Mary Road (FH 3) south-east from Flagstaff, 7 miles. The day use parking area is on the west side of the road.
Click on map thumbnail for larger view.
Attractions: Fishing/boating, picnicking, wildlife watching, biking, photography
Facilities: Picnic area with ramadas, boat ramp, toilets (composting), biking, photography
- No drinking water available at the lake.
- There is a boat-motor size limitation on Lower Lake Mary of no larger than 10 horsepower.
- Handbook of Boating Laws and Responsibilities (non-Forest Service Site)
- Vessel and Engine Restrictions in Arizona (non-Forest Service Site)
- Arizona Game and Fish Department (non-Forest Service Site)
Map showing recreational areas. Map Information