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“Very nice.”

Patagonia Lake State Park
Ranked #1 of 8 things to do in Patagonia
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Tucked away in the rolling hills of southeastern Arizona is a hidden treasure.Patagonia Lake State Park was established in 1975 as a state park and is an ideal place to find whitetail deer roaming the hills and great blue herons walking the shoreline. The park offers a campground, beach, picnic area with ramadas, tables and grills, a creek trail, boat ramps, and a marina. The nearby Lakeside Market offers boat rentals and supplies. The campground overlooks the lake where anglers catch crappie, bass, bluegill, catfish, and trout. The park is popular for water skiing, fishing, camping, picnicking, and hiking. And the tracks of the New Mexico/Arizona railroad lie beneath the lake and remnants of the old historic line may be found at the Nature Conservancy in Patagonia. Hikers can stroll along the creek trail and see birds such as the canyon towhee, Inca dove, vermilion flycatcher, black vulture, and several species of hummingbirds.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Wheelchair access
Reviewed September 24, 2012

This state park has had a lot of money poured into it. Unfortunately, most of it went into accommodating fisherman and boaters rather than campers. It sits in beautiful rolling hills on a reservoir. AZ doesn't have a single natural lake. The reservoir is fairly large and has some nice big rocks around its edges. It also has some nice tall reeds. The campground fills up almost every single weekend. One can make reservations to ensure one doesn't drive all the way out there only to find that all the spots have been taken. It costs $25 for a spot with electricity (110, 12 and something else I couldn't recognize) and water. Yes, they have 2 spots without electricity and they cost $17 but at the busy end. If you want busy, reserve in the west campground. If you want things to be a bit more quite, reserve in the east campground. They are literally right next to each other. The west campground spots are closer together and most have a small ramada over the picnic table. This means that only at high noon will you get any shade on the table. The east campground doesn't have ramadas but you can bring your own shade and move it around in order to get shade on the table. The state park claims that every site has shade but that means there is shade under shrubby, thorny trees that are hard to even walk under because of their height and thorns. The restrooms have showers and the great thing is that there isn't a charge for them. Because the campground is next to the "lake", there are many bugs. Because it's in the desert, there are scorpions! We had one crawl under our tent. We had to pitch tent on the concrete driveway as that was the only place in our site that didn't have a huge red ant hill. The fire rings are nice and include a hinged grill for cooking. The lake is pretty and we rented a boat and enjoyed going around. There were many Great Blue Herons and other water fowl. The concession for renting the boats lacked customer service and actually caused confusion. The price for renting kayaks and boats is fairly reasonable. There is also a small convenience store which is nice should you need some bare necessities. The lake even has a "beach" area with a designated swim area. There is a great birding walk at the east end of the east campground and nearby Sonoita Creek Preserve offers nice hikes in appropriate weather seasons. Despite it's altitude, it's still warm. We had daytime highs in the 90's in the latter part of September.

6  Thank Bkbak
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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192 - 196 of 217 reviews

Reviewed September 23, 2012

Great place for wandering and enjoying nature. I haven't camped or rented a boat but had fun walking around the entire lake.

3  Thank Jennifer D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 17, 2012

Wow I was impressed. This lake is really beautiful and the surrounding mountain ranges make
it even more so. I was a visitor from Chicago and my friend who lives in Tucson brought me
there. We swam and had a picnic it was super. We went on a week day so there were very
few people there and it was so peaceful. I really enjoyed it, and think you would also

4  Thank merrylargo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 3, 2012

Great place to let the dogs swim. It's a bit of a drive mostly, but go on the week day and its pretty calm. Weekends can be pretty crowded, but it is still a great park/lake. Small store on site and tons of camp/rv sites.

4  Thank Nicki F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 17, 2012

Entrance fee is a bit steep for just a morning of birding (not using any facilities other than restroom).

Although the whole park can be good birding, the draw for birders is the lake, itself (Double-crested and Neotropic Cormorants usually present, other species in season). In summer, 2012, the special birds were 2 Brown Pelicans.

Birders usually go for an exploratory stroll along Patagonia Creek. Parking (4 slots) is available at the end of the road through the campground. Yes, there are cow patties galore, but the birds soon divert your mind.

Depending on the season and the year, birders have been delighted by Nutting's Flycatcher, Black-capped Gnatcatchers, Elegant Trogon, several species of flycatchers, vireos, Black-chinned Sparrows--you never know what might show with a little exploration here.

1  Thank Edge W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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