Area Status: Open
View of lake standing on dock

This medium-sized 132 acre lake is located in the Canelo Hills west of the Huachuca Mountains.

It offers a number of recreational possibilities for those willing to drive the long, paved roads that lead to it. For those who like to fish, Parker Canyon Lake offers both cold and warm water species, including stocked rainbow trout and resident bass, sunfish, and catfish. There is a fishing pier and a paved boat ramp at the lake, as well as a lakeside paved area and a graveled path along some of the best catfishing shoreline. There is also a concessionaire-operated country store at the lakeshore where you can pick up some last minute supplies, buy a fishing license, or rent a boat. Bird watchers and just plain nature lovers will also find much to enjoy at Parker Canyon Lake. A five mile trail leads around the shoreline never getting more than a few steps from the water. The Parker Lakeshore Trail offers excellent vantage points from which to enjoy the ducks and other waterfowl that are invariably bobbing on the lake’s clear waters. Some of those points even have benches and interpretive signs. Bald eagles and osprey are regularly sighted in this area, as are spring warblers and hummingbirds in season. Coues whitetail deer can frequently be seen browsing among the oaks and grasses that surround the lake and in the two campgrounds near its shores. Coatimundi, javelina, and roadrunners, three animals that are about as southwestern as you can get, make occasional appearances as well. Parking for vehicles, motor homes, boat trailers.

Accessible by passenger car.  Fish available include trout, bass, catfish, and panfish.  You can fish from a boat or a fishing pier.  Boat ramp available.

At a Glance

Area Amenities: Accessible,Boat ramp,Fee charged for some activities,Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water,Parking
Fees: Day-use: $8 per vehicle Weekly: $10 per vehicle Buy a pass online, or purchase a pass on site with cash or check. Proof of payment, or a valid Coronado National Forest Annual Pass or Interagency (America the Beautiful) Pass, including the Annual, Senior, Access, or Military Pass, must be displayed on the driver's side of vehicle dashboard. Learn more about accepted passes.
Open Season: Year round
Restrictions: A valid Arizona fishing license (available on site at the marina, online, or at outdoor stores around the state) is required for all anglers 10 years of age and older. Four trout is the daily bag limit and the possession limit. Using live bait fish is prohibited. Boats are limited to one 10 hp motor or less.
Closest Towns: 25 miles southeast of Sonoita in the scenic Canelo Hills.
Water: Drinking water is available
Restroom: Yes
Operated By: Sierra Vista Ranger District
Information Center: Sierra Vista Ranger District 520-378-0311

General Information


From Tucson, travel east on Interstate 10 to State Route 83 (exit 281) and turn south 50 miles through Sonoita to Parker Canyon Lake.


Most facilities are accessible to visitors with disabilities

General Notes:

A small concession-operated marina and store is open every day except Wednesdays, from March through October. During winter months, it is closed Tuesday through Thursdays. You can purchase groceries, fishing supplies, licenses. Boat rentals for either electric motor powered or row boats are also available.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Lake and Pond Fishing

Boating and fishing. Country store. Oak-grassland setting. Watchable wildlife. Lakeside trail.

Fish Species Trout, Catfish, Bass
Fishing Mode Boating (one 10 hp motor or less).


Boating - Motorized

 Boats are limited to one 10 hp motor.

The Mercantile & Marina Store is a small concession-operated, solar-powered marina & store, and is open Monday through Friday 11-5, Saturday and Sunday 8-5, year-round. Groceries, fishing supplies, and licenses can be purchased.  In addition to renting electric motor boats, four-stroke motor boats, and row boats, the concessionaire also rents kayaks and canoes.


Swim at your own risk. There are no designated swimming areas and no lifeguards on duty. Swimming is prohibited at the boat ramp.


Picnic tables: Yes
Fee charged for some activities: Yes
Parking: Yes
Toilets: Yes
Accessible: Yes
Boat ramp: Yes
Drinking water: Yes

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  Latitude : 

  Longitude : 

  Elevation : 
5,400 feet