Hop in your rig and drive 56 miles northeast of Cheyenne, Wyoming and you will arrive at Hawk Springs State Recreation Area. This is a cozy little spot on the western shore of Hawk Springs Reservoir, southeast Wyoming's premier fishing spot. Located just a short distance from the Nebraska border, Hawk Springs is full of feisty walleye, largemouth bass and crappie for you to sink a hook into. Whether you fish or just want to chill on your boat the launch ramp and boat dock will come in handy. The shoreline also has great spots to jump in for a swim. There isn't a huge selection of amenities at Hawk Springs, especially for RV travelers. There are 24 primitive campsites with picnic tables and fire pits. Water taps operate seasonally but toilets are operational year-round. A nice little playground is available for the whipper-snappers. Hawk Springs is mainly popular for the lake and the campsites. Winter temperatures get down to 14 degrees and in July it can hit 90. The landscape around Hawk Springs is wide open prairie or semi-arid wasteland dotted with farms. That makes for big skies and easy camper cruising.
Hawk Springs State Recreation Area is 56 miles northeast of Wyoming's charming capital and largest city, Cheyenne. Just point your rig up Route 85, which is also part of the CanAm Highway from Mexico to Canada. You will have two lanes northbound for about half of the trip. Just after the turnoff for La Grange, you will see a brown sign for the right-hand turn for Hawk Springs. The road is unsealed, but it is dead flat and dead straight all the way in.
The access road brings you to the south end of the dam which makes the reservoir exist. You first arrive at the main parking lot which has plenty of space for day use for RVs and boat trailers. This is also where the boat launch is. Swing south and you'll pass a day use area with a water tap and toilets. Two roads go along either side of it for easier passing. At the end, where the campsites are located, the road forms a loop and additional water taps and toilets are located. Sites are all of the back-in variety.
Hawk Springs has 24 primitive campsites. There are water taps and toilets but no hookups of any kind. Online reservations are not offered. The sites are nicely spaced apart and shaded by cottonwood trees. The adjacent beach is also nicely shaded. Picnic tables with fire pits are located in close proximity to all the sites. The campground is thoughtfully placed well away from the boat launch and day use area. There is no highway or settlement anywhere near enough to disturb your peace and quiet. If you need some extra amenities, the town of Hawk Springs is just north up Route 85 a couple of miles. The sites are open year round but the water taps only work from May to September. Pets must be kept on leashes at all times. Thanks to the shaded beach and picnic tables, Hawk Springs is surprisingly comfortable for a primitive campground. A campground host is on site daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
The main draw to Hawk Springs is fishing. Most anglers who come here are aiming for a big fat feisty walleye, although largemouth bass, crappie, and channel catfish also lurk in the waters. Note that you will need a valid license to fish. Whether you try your luck angling from the shore or drop your boat down the launch ramp, try to provide yourself some shade in the hot prairie summers. What better way to enjoy the wide open spaces than out on the water. Ice fishing is possible in the winter.
If dropping your boat into the water, sailing it out into the lake and jumping off it into the refreshing Wyoming water isn't your thing, there are plenty of great spots along the shore for a cooling dip. There is a small beach just north back up the road from the campground. There is another spot just beside the main car park. The dam can provide a good if rocky option, too. What better than slipping into the water on a hot summer's day.
You don't need a fishing rod or a desire to commune with the fishes to enjoy Hawk Springs Reservoir on a boat. It can be a great place to get out on the water and chill with your nearest and dearest simply to enjoy boating. Have a picnic out on the water, try to sneak up on the blue herons, explore the coastline or get a workout with the oars. Hawk Springs is a great remote boating location for you to enjoy.
Hawk Springs is home to a blue heron rookery. Make your way to the south end of the reservoir and hide in the reeds. Chances are that you will be rewarded with sightings of these majestic birds. The area is only accessible by boat. Various other bird species inhabit the reservoir. These include gadwalls, pintails, avocets, wood ducks, great horned owls, and blue-winged and green-winged teal. Bring your binoculars in your campervan and a bit of patience and it should be a rewarding experience.
Hawk Springs has a total of 12 picnic tables, each with its own firepit. Whether you want to roast some weenies on an open fire or make your own vegan sandwiches under the huge prairie skies, anything is possible at Hawk Springs. Catch some hard fighting walleye, work up an apatite with a rigorous swim and then roast those bad boys with the family as the perfect end to a perfect day. Walleye is good with lemon and olive oil.
If you have been in the camper with the family for a while, Hawk Springs State Recreation Area gives you some opportunities for children and adults to unwind and do their own things. Send the kids to the playground while you bet on who pays for the next tank of gas over a friendly game of horseshoes. After many long hours in the rig, the wide open spaces and recreational possibilities of Hawk Springs can be a godsend.