Permitted Use Days:
UPDATED 3/31/2020: Boat launch access has been temporarily postponed until further notice, due to high water levels flooding the boat launch and parking area.
Thank you for your interest and continued support in Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department’s ongoing effort to restore the Agua Fria Conservation Area. The Department understands the area is considered by anglers to be a prime fishing spot during the springtime and has developed a plan to allow motorized vehicles (with higher clearances and 4-wheel drive capabilities) towing small trailers/watercraft access to the shoreline boat launch in the area. Access will be permitted for a limited time while water levels are conducive for such use, the riverbed crossing is passable, weather conditions do not pose a threat to the area, and when staffing is available.
The area is open from 6 am to 4 pm on the dates listed above.
The current water level elevation for the area is around 1698 ft. Only small watercraft operators are permitted to utilize the Agua Fria Boat Launch and are encouraged to exercise extreme caution while launching watercraft to avoid potential hazards such as low water areas, sandbars and other related obstacles while boating in the Agua Fria River upper arm of Lake Pleasant.
Access for walk-in traffic is currently available on a daily basis and will be permitted from the upper or middle parking area. Please use the self-pay station at this location for entry and remain on designated trails or along the disturbed shoreline only. Check fee schedule for current park entry fees. Please have cash, exact change is required, as an entry station is not yet available in this area. For folks interested in accessing the Agua Fria arm by boat from the main entrance side, the area will remain inaccessible until June 15, 2020, when the bald eagle closure is lifted, unless otherwise noted.
Access to Boat Launch Area: Times may be subject to change due to staffing availability, poor weather conditions, riverbed flowing, etc. Always check website for updates before heading out to visit for possible changes to opening dates prior to arrival (i.e., due to weather conditions, staffing issues, etc...). Please have cash, exact change is required. Check fee schedule for current park entry fees. For additional information on the area, please direct your questions to the Park Entry Station at (602) 506-2930.
Rules for Use:
To ensure a safe, enjoyable experience for all and responsible usage of the area, please observe the following rules:
- No access will be permitted within the Bald Eagle Closure areas when in effect. The closure areas are marked with buoys, fencing and signage (see map for details). Illegal access within the closure areas may result in fines, citations, other penalties, and a closure of the Agua Fria Boat Ramp area.
- The area is open for day-use activities only (no camping) from 6:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., unless otherwise posted.
- Non-motorized travel only permitted on designated trails or along riverbed outside of eagle closure areas – no shoreline access west from the boat launch area.
- The accessible portion of the Lake within the Agua Fria is a no wake zone.
- No shooting allowed in the area.
- Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV) will not be permitted to access to the boat launch area, but will be able to park in the middle or upper parking lot areas (entry fee required).
- Pack it in, pack it out. Do not litter or leave trash in the area.
Seasonal Bald Eagle Closure: During certain breeding stages (courtship, mating, incubation, young nestlings and nestlings near fledging), human activity near a Bald Eagle nest can cause nest abandonment and/or failure. Established breeding area closures reduce loss by managing human activities near nest sites. Areas closed during breeding season have been highlighted on the maps below.
NOTE: The Bald Eagle Closure is typically in effect from December 15 - June 15*. Access to the lower arm of the Agua Fria is closed to all entry while the bald eagle closure is in effect.