Frye Mesa Reservoir Lakes

Area Status: Open

When high-elevation Riggs Flat Lake atop the Pinalenos is snowed in and covered with ice, trout anglers who come to the Safford District can still find a place to fish at Frye Mesa Reservoir. Lower winter temperatures and longer winter nights cool the waters of this small body of water surrounded by Sonoran Desert sufficiently, so that the Arizona Game and Fish Department can stock it with Gila Trout. About a half-mile beyond the reservoir, at the end of FR 103, the Frye Canyon Trail #36 heads out toward the upper slopes of the mountain. If the fish aren’t biting, you can always take a hike.

At a Glance

Open Season: Year-round
Usage: Light
Restrictions: A valid Arizona fishing license (available online or at outdoor stores around the state) is required for all anglers 10 years of age and older. Daily bag limits are (2) of any combination of trout species. Statewide limits apply to all other species. No boating allowed; float tubes are allowed.
Closest Towns: Thatcher, AZ
Information Center: Safford Ranger District (928) 428-4150

General Information


Drive northwest from Safford to Thatcher on U.S. Hwy 70. Turn left, (south) on Stadium Street and follow it to Forest Road 103/West Frye Mesa Rd. Drive about 10 miles on FR 103/West Frye Mesa Rd. to Frye Mesa Reservoir.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Dispersed Camping

Lake and Pond Fishing

Fish Species RainbowTrou(including Apache, brook, brown, cutthroat, rainbow, and tiger trout; grayling) Trout

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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  Elevation : 
5,000 feet