Apache Lake is one of four man-made reservoirs created along the Salt River in
Central Arizona as part of the Salt River Project to provide flood control and stable
water supply to the Phoenix area. The lake is located along the Apache Trail about 65
miles northeast of Phoenix in the Tonto National Forest. Apache Lake was formed by
the completion of Horseshoe Dam in 1927. It is the second largest lake of the four
Salt River Project reservoirs and is located approximately 5 miles downstream from
Roosevelt Lake and upstream from Canyon Lake and Saguaro Lake.
Apache Lake is the deepest on the entire chain chain of reservoir lakes on the Salt
River. It has a depth of 266 feet, it's 17 miles long and has 41.5 miles of shoreline.
The surface area of Apache Lake is 2,568 acres at full capacity, and it can store
254,138-acre feet of water.
Apache Lake is home to Largemouth bass, Smallmouth bass, yellow bass, walleye,
crappie, trout, channel catfish, flathead catfish, bluegill, and carp.
Surrounded by the rugged beauty of the Superstition Wilderness in the Tonto National
Forest, Apache Lake is the perfect destination for anyone who enjoys breathtaking
mountain views, watching local wildlife, hiking, camping, and of course fishing!
Apache Lake has always been considered a hidden gem due to what some consider
an unpleasant drive on the unpaved State Route 88 (Apache Trail). The road is
narrow and winding, but the views are outstanding. There's always less traffic due to
the access and somedays, it feels you're the only boat on the lake.
Since the Woodbury Fire in June 2019, which consumed 124,000 acres of the Tonto
National Forest, a 5-mile section of the Apache Trail from Fish Creek Hill to Reavis
Trailhead Road remains closed for public safety reasons, due to the extensive
roadway damage and debris. In September 2019, a storm dumped approximately six
inches of rain onto the fire scar and the runoff severely damaged large portions of the
road. It is unknown when the road will be repaired, but we will keep you posted when
the process starts.
Now, there is only one way to reach Apache lake. You can reach the lake by taking
State Route 188 either from US 60 or State Route 87 and taking State Route 88 west
from Roosevelt Lake Dam.
Apache Lake is another one of our favorites. Once we're there we never want to
leave! If you plan on fishing with us or just visiting the lake, don't forget to stop in the
Apache Lake Marina and Resort for bite to eat or a cold beverage after a great day of
If you're considering taking a trip or have further questions about Apache Lake don't
hesitate to give Phoenix Fishing Guides a call at 480-264-1101. We'll be happy to
answer all of your questions and book your trip.