Boysen State Park enjoys the distinction of being one of the largest state parks. It has an impressive lake, which is the main attraction. The park also has interesting land formations, the result of geological events dating back thousands of years. Located south of Owl Creek Mountains, the park is at the entrance of Wind River Canyon, part of Wind River Canyon Scenic Byway. Although open year round, limited services are offered during the winter season.
Surrounded by Wind River Indian Reservation, Boysen State Park has camping and water sport facilities.
The most popular sport may well be fishing because the region is famous for its trout and walleye fishing, but most water sports, including skiing, can be found here because the reservoir has warm water during most of the season. Additionally, the east shore has a beach for swimming.
Besides camping and water sports, visitors also come to Boysen State Park for picnics and sightseeing along the 76 mile shoreline. There are also several scenic regions along Wind River below the dam.
The northern shore of the lake has a marina and concession stands. Fishermen can purchase their fishing licenses here, as well as food and bait. Although most of the fishing takes place in summer, fishing also continues in winter, and the lake is considered a first-rate place for ice fishing. State record fish have been caught here.
The lake offers numerous fishing opportunities.
Fish commonly caught include:
• Brown Trout
• Largemouth bass
• Black Bullhead
• Mountain Whitefish
• Lake trout and Brook trout
Non-game species can also be found here, including:
• Fathead Minnow
• Plains Killifish
• Golden and Sand Shiners
• Flathead, Lake and Creek Chubs
• White, Longnose and Northern Redhorse Suckers
• The River Carpsucker.
The camping areas consist of Lower and Upper Wind River, Brannon and Tamarask, Tough Creek Campground, and Loop 1 and 2.
Lower Wind River is part of Wind River Canyon and situated below the dam and alongside Wind River. The original Boysen Dam used to be located here. The camp has interesting geological features, shade trees, and stretches of open grass. Individual or group bookings can be made. In total, there are fifty sites, twenty-four of which have to be reserved ahead of time. Big Horn Sheep are the main wildlife, often spotted in herds.
Upper Wind River is also situated below the dam and along Wind River. It, too, has fifty sites, ten of which require advanced reservation. The flora and fauna are similar to that found in the campgrounds of Lower Wind River.
North of the reservoir are the campgrounds of Brannon and Tamarask. There are sixty-five sites here. The area offers complete marina facilities, including commercial concession stands. Boats can be tied up in a protected bay. The relaxing campgrounds consist of a sandy beach, shade trees, and picnic shelters.
Tough Creek Campground is on a peninsula. It has sixty-five sites, a boating area, shade trees, and picnic shelters. The group shelter has to be reserved ahead of time.
Loop 1 and Loop 2 campgrounds are located on the reservoir’s west shore. Although similar in many ways, there are a few differences.
Loop 1 has 20 sites and access to the lake. The grounds have shade trees and picnic shelters. The small camping areas are South Muddy, Sandy Hills Loop, Libby Point, and Fremont Bay.
Loop 2 has 30 sites and access to the lake as well. The grounds are similar and include a sandy beach and a boat launch area. The limited camping areas are Cottonwood Bay, Trout Bay, Wilson Bay, Sand Mesa, and North Muddy.
There are three entrances to Boysen State Park: The east side of U.S. Highway 20, the south side of U.S. Highway 26, and the west side of Bass Lake Road.
The physical address of Boysen State Park is 15 Ash, Boysen Route, Shoshoni, WY 82649. Inquiries and reservations can be made by calling the office at (307) 876-2796. Daniel Marty is the Superintendent of the state park.