Where the western plains meet the mountains of the Continental Divide in northern Colorado lies a place that is beloved among boaters.
Boyd Lake in Loveland has all the ingredients boaters look for in a great boating destination. The 1,700-acre lake is home to fantastic fishing, wide-open stretches of water perfect for waterskiing, gorgeous beaches where families enjoy picnicking and swimming, and breathtaking scenery. With all of this, plus great campsites and recreational opportunities such as hiking, biking and boat rentals, it’s no wonder Boyd Lake is such a popular hotspot among boaters.
Boyd Lake State Park is located on the lake’s western shore, and a Colorado State Parks Pass or paying a park entrance fee is required for boaters to access the lake. The park is home to Boyd Lake Marina (970-663-2662), which has slip and mooring rentals, fuel, live bait and fishing supplies, plus groceries and more. It is also home to one of the lake’s three boat ramps, the six-lane Main Boat Ramp. The lake also has the two-lane Heron Cove Ramp and the Deep Water Ramp, which is only accessible when the water level is low.
The lake is a popular destination among fishermen, who prowl its waters hunting rainbow trout, white and largemouth bass, walleye, catfish, bluegill and perch. And for those who enjoy a more fast-paced adrenaline rush, waterskiing is allowed in the southern part of the lake.
Nature lovers enjoy watching wildlife around Boyd Lake, which includes such species as bald eagles, great-horned owls and white pelicans. The shoreline features scenic hiking and biking trails, which connect to the city of Loveland’s recreational trail system. The marina also offers a wide selection of boat rentals, with everything from pontoon boats perfect for on-the-water parties to jetskis and runabouts for zipping across the water to kayaks and canoes for exploring the lake’s quiet corners. For a different way to explore Boyd Lake, visitors can now rent stand-up paddleboards from two area companies – What’s Up (www.nocosup.com; 970-797-4996) and Mountain Rentals (www.mountainrentalsinc.com; 970-667-2922).
The park is ideal for family afternoons spent swimming and picnicking. It has 67 individual, high-quality picnic sites that are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Most of the sites have grills and some even have shelters. The park also has a beach with a buoyed-off swimming area. At the beach is a pavilion with restrooms, rinsing showers, a snack bar and picnic tables.
With so much to do at Boyd Lake, visitors may want to spend several days there. And that’s easy to do thanks to the park’s modern campground, which has nearly 150 campsites. All the sites come with electric hookups, picnic tables and grills. The campground also has restrooms, showers, plus a playground and horseshoe pits. Campsite reservations can be made up to six months in advance.