Prineville Reservoir, Oregon, USA

Welcome to the ultimate guide for history, statistics, local fun facts and the best things to do at Prineville Reservoir.

If you’re considering Prineville Reservoir vacation rentals, we’ve made it super easy to explore accommodations and nearby hotels using the interactive map below. Simply click on a listing to compare similar properties, best rates and availability for your dates. Or keep scrolling to read our Prineville Reservoir guide!

Prineville Reservoir visitor and community guide

Lake Locations: USA - West - Oregon - Central -

The 3,030-acre Prineville Reservoir is one of Central Oregon’s prolific fishing and outdoor recreation water bodies. The lake’s well-developed public recreation areas provide many opportunities for a fine mix of water-related outdoor activities. Boating, camping, fishing, birding, hunting and wildlife viewing are the highlights for any visitor. The nearby scenic drive along the Crooked River and over Bowman Dam is particularly worthwhile. Prineville Reservoir is located 15 miles south of the town of Prineville and about two hours from Bend, Oregon.

The US Bureau of Reclamation, as part of its Crooked River project, built the Arthur R Bowman Dam across the Crooked River in 1961. The new Prineville Reservoir was created by flooding a sagebrush and juniper-filled canyon along 18 miles of the Crooked River upstream from Prineville, Oregon. With the ability to hold up to 150,000 acre-feet of water, the new man-made lake serves to store irrigation water, alleviate flooding, and provide welcome recreational opportunities to the public. At its deepest points, Prineville Reservoir reaches 130 feet.

Prineville Reservoir’s 43-mile shoreline offers a wealth of opportunities for anglers who come to seek the rainbow trout that proliferate in the lake. Stocked annually with as many as 170,000 trout, optimal conditions allow for many of the trout to reach 10 inches, with 14-inch fish often caught. The many inlets and coves shelter large populations of catfish, smallmouth bass and black crappie, nearly guaranteeing some form of success for every visiting fisherman. Excellent fishing can be anticipated January through June, and ice fishing is often productive for trout. Fishing from shore is often successful at Jasper Point, Prineville State Park, and the dam.

A 3,800-acre wildlife management area encompasses the northeastern part of the lake. The area of protected land and water provides a refuge for a variety of wildlife including mule deer and many different species of waterfowl. Camping is available in Prineville State Park, including tent sites, cabin rentals, and sites with electrical hookup or full hookup. Jasper Point sites have electric hookup. Both sites are open May through September, and both have boat ramps and campground activities. For geocachers, there are many caches in a five mile area.

Pack your rods and head out to Prineville Reservoir. A visit of days can easily stretch into weeks as the peace and serenity of the reservoir, coupled with vast star-filled night skies, make visitors loathe to leave.

Custom Prineville Reservoir house decor

Read our full review of these personalized lake house signs.

Things to do at Prineville Reservoir

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hunting
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • State Park

Fish species found at Prineville Reservoir

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Black Crappie
  • Catfish
  • Crappie
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Trout

Best hotels and vacation rentals at Prineville Reservoir

The Prineville Reservoir map shown above is a simple and stress-free way to search for trip accommodations. But if you want to take a deeper dive to find the ideal waterfront home, cabin, condo, hotel or resort, visit our favorite lodging partners by clicking the buttons below.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Prineville Reservoir photo gallery

New photos coming soon!

Prineville Reservoir statistics & helpful links

divider

Lake Type: Artificial Reservoir, Dammed

Water Level Control: US Bureau of Reclamation

Surface Area: 3,030 acres

Shoreline Length: 43 miles

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 3,211 feet

Minimum Elevation (Min Pond): 3,114 feet

Maximum Elevation (Max Pond): 3,257 feet

Maximum Depth: 130 feet

Water Volume: 150,200 acre-feet

Completion Year: 1961

Drainage Area: 2,635 sq. miles

We strive to keep the information on LakeLubbers as accurate as possible. However, if you’ve found something in this article that needs updating, we’d certainly love to hear from you! Please fill out our Content Correction form.

Advertise your Prineville Reservoir vacation rental

LakeLubbers will soon offer homeowners and property managers the opportunity to to showcase their vacation rentals to the thousands of lake lovers searching our site daily for accommodations. If you’d like additional details, please contact our advertising team here.

divider

Looking for the Prineville Reservoir forum?

LakeLubbers previously offered visitors the ability to create accounts and participate in lake forums. When we overhauled the site’s content management system in 2021 we had to disable those features. We’re evaluating options and welcome your comments and feedback here.

We also encourage you to join our lake-lovin’ community on Facebook and Instagram!

Spread the word! Share our Prineville Reservoir article with your fellow Lake Lubbers!