Offering boaters great fishing, amazing scenery, watersports opportunities and exciting outdoor adventures, Horsetooth Reservoir in northern Colorado is a little slice of boating heaven.
Nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Horsetooth Reservoir is located just west of Fort Collins, Colorado, roughly 65 miles north of Denver. Built in 1949, the reservoir is about six-and-a-half miles long and roughly half-a-mile wide. It has 25 miles of scenic shoreline, and it’s a popular destination as each summer thousands of boaters, waterskiers and fishermen flock to its waters.
The reservoir has four boat launch sites, and dockage is available at Inlet Bay Marina(970-223-0140). All boats entering the reservoir must be inspected for aquatic nuisance species (ANS). ANS is a serious threat, and officials are making every effort to protect the area’s waters.
Their success is evident in the beautiful waters of Horsetooth Reservoir, where boaters enjoy activities such as waterskiing and swimming. Anglers find plenty of species to target in the reservoir, including rainbow trout, smallmouth bass, walleye and perch. There are also several scenic coves worth exploring or stopping for a picnic and a swim.
The fun at Horsetooth Reservoir isn’t only found on the water. There’s plenty of fun and adventure along its shores, as the reservoir is surrounded by 1,900 acres of public lands. Horsetooth Reservoir is considered by many to be the birthplace of American bouldering. The area’s sandstone cliffs and boulders offer climbers excellent routes and boulder problems, not to mention spectacular views of the reservoir. The area also has four campgrounds with more than 100 campsites, plus plenty of opportunities for hiking and biking.