Ochoco Reservoir -
A dam constructed on Ochoco Creek after World War I formed the reservoir for irrigation and flood control which allowed for recreation activities. Mill Creek and Ochoco Creek input to the reservoir and the output is Ochoco Creek. Except for the campground and dam, almost all of the reservoir's shoreline is private land. Although the campground is owned by Oregon State Parks and Recreation, it is leased and operated by Crook County. Reservoir water is used primarily for farm irrigation, so the lake level drops significantly after spring inflow from Ochoco Creek. When fullest in spring, the reservoir's east end near Mill Creek is shallow with mudflats attractive to shorebirds.
Caution: The highway is single-lane with few locations safe for parking. Observing from the highway or any other public road is best with a spotting scope because of the viewing distance involved.
The reservoir is stocked with fingerling rainbow trout in mid-April, May and June. There are holdover rainbow trout that have been caught ranging from 12-16 inches. As the reservoir is drawn down for irrigation the water is warmer and the fishing for bass and bluegill improve greatly. The reservoir is open year around and because of its location is a great place for ice fishing (from Dec-Feb). The use of cheese & eggs, medium slit shots, 4lb test leader, #14 treble hook for cheese, or #12 egg hook can all be successful. The best time to fish is when the ice is out of the reservoir (mid Feb-early April) with use of cheese, marshmallows, worms, a 4-6 lb line with a 16 inch leader, and slider sinkers. Trolling is best (April-July) using green spotted or black flatfish, flashers with bright colored teaser near the mouth of Ochoco Creek.
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