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Wild Horse Reservoir

Wild Horse Reservoir found in Wild Horse State Recreation Area is a remote park open year-round to fishermen, swimmers, hikers, and campers. Perfect for hanging out by the water in the summers and ice fishing in the winter it is never a bad time to stop by and enjoy this beautiful Reservoir.

2013-06-16 12 46 26 View southeast across Wild Horse Reservoir in NevadaAttribution: Famartin / CC BY-SA

Wild Horse Reservoir Overview

Wildhorse Reservoir has many of the amenities you would hope for in a state park, which includes camping, fishing, swimming, and boating.

This park is large enough to accommodate even large RV’s.

The most popular activity at the Reservoir is fishing including Rainbow trout, German brown trout, smallmouth bass, wiper, yellow perch, and catfish.

In summer months hiking and boating are in abundance at Wild Horse, and in the winter months ice skating and sledding, visitors also enjoy snowmobiling and skiing.

How to Get to Wild Horse Reservoir

From Elko, NV take NV-225 N to the Wild Horse State Recreation Area entrance. 


Day use entrance fee:  $5.00 per vehicle

Boat launch:  $10.00

Camping:  $15.00 per night

Camp and Boat:  $20.00 per night

Cabins: $80 per night

Hours Open

Open seven days a week, 365 days a year.

Wild Horse Reservoir Weather


32° / 4°


35° / 7°


44° / 17°


52° / 24°


62° / 30°


73° / 36°


84° / 41°


83° / 38°


73° / 31°


59° / 23°


43° / 16°


33° / 5°

Best Time of Year to Hike

We found the best time of year to hike is during the summer months as snow and ice often cover the area for the rest of the year. June-Early September is an ideal time to hike the area.

However, there is plenty to do here in the cold months including Ice Fishing, Sledding, and Ice Skating.

Maximum Group Size

Depending on the cabin rented they have a maximum occupancy of 4-6 people

Wild Horse Trails

While no marked trails are found in Wild Horse there are miles of game trails to explore the sprawling public lands surrounding the reservoir.


Pets are welcome but must remain on a leash at all times.


There is plenty to do here with your family, exploring and fishing to name a few. This is a great place to get your kids out in nature and learning about what it has to offer.

Restrooms at Wild Horse Reservoir

Restrooms and showers are available year-round to visitors and campers.

Cabins are available for rent which have a private bathroom however they are not equipped with showers and visitors must use the showers found in the campground nearby.

Cell Phone Service at Wild Horse Reservoir

AT&T is the only cellular network that services the area according to the parks service. However, do not rely on it being available everywhere in the park.


34 Campgrounds are available in the park with a table, shade, a fire pit, and a camp pad at each.

There are no hookups for trailers but there are pull-through spots that can accommodate even large RV’s. Bathrooms with showers are available for visitors to the area.

Cabins are available for those who want to experience this park without needing to pack all of your camping equipment and escape the cold.

These cabins include a covered front deck, living room with a sofa, eating area with table, chairs, mini-fridge, microwave, bathroom, heating, and air conditioning.

And while there are no showers inside of cabins visitors can use the showers in the campgrounds only a short walk away.

One of the cabins is even ADA accessible so adventurers of all ability can get the best out of the park.


Fishing is one of the more popular activities at Wild Horse Reservoir. Rainbow trout. German brown trout, smallmouth bass, wiper, yellow perch, and catfish are all found in the waters and are abundant in the spring and fall.

Ice fishing is extremely popular in the winter months and can yield great results when done by an experienced fisherman.

Drones at Cave Lake

The use of drones is prohibited in Nevada State Parks unless in an area designated for that use by a park supervisor, and a commercial use permit is in effect. All applicable FAA regulations apply.

First Aid

While this is a well-traveled campground bringing your own first aid kit for small injuries is always recommended.

Check our First Aid Kit Guide for what you should bring for your personal pack. 

Plants to Watch for in the Area

The most common flora found in the park is Big Sage and large areas of quaking aspen covering the surrounding hills.

In the summer months, wildflowers will begin to bloom with sprawling fields of beautiful colors.


Given its name, it would be assumed that Wild Horse Reservoir would be full of horses roaming the area. However ranching and traffic to the park have driven most of the wild horses out of the park, it is still possible to see wild horses in the surrounding desert.


Many types of wildlife roam this area pronghorn, mule deer, and elk, as well as a variety of waterfowl and upland game birds, are often seen roaming the areas surrounding the campground and in the reservoir.

Stargazing at Wild Horse Reservoir

Being so far off the beaten trail has its benefits, with perfectly dark skies this is one of the most beautiful stargazing sites you will ever see.

Wild Horse Reservoir Picnics

The picnic area has a lovely view of the reservoir and has tables and grills for visitors who want to enjoy a nice day by the water. Bathrooms found in the campground are available for use if you are there for the day as well.

Wheelchair Accessibility

From Nevada Parks Department: “Those with developmental and/or physical limitations are invited to enjoy all of the recreational activities of Nevada State Parks. If you would like to request additional support or accommodations, please call Nevada State Parks at (775) 684-2770. We continually seek ways to provide recreational opportunities for people of all abilities and welcome any suggestions you may have.”

This park also offers an ADA friendly Cabin making it one of the better reservoirs to visit for adventurers with physical limitations.

Additional Photos

2014-08-19 13 19 01 Sign describing Wild Horse Dam, Nevada
Attribution: Famartin / CC BY-SA

2013-06-16 13 22 55 Wild Horse Reservoir in Nevada viewed from a rock outcrop above dam, with Nevada State Route 225 along the shore
Attribution: Famartin / CC BY-SA

Resources Used

Wild Horse Reservoir