Arcadia Lake is one of the best spots in central Oklahoma for outdoor recreation. Unlike metro lakes such as Hefner, Overholser and Draper, Arcadia allows swimming. And it is an extremely popular spot for camping, picnicking, fishing, skiing and hiking.
A U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lake, Arcadia opened in 1987. It serves as a water supply for Edmond as well as flood control for the Deep Fork River Basin.
Arcadia Lake has a surface area of 1820 acres, with 26 miles of shoreline. Average lake depth is about 17 feet, according to the Oklahoma Water Resource Board, and it is 49 feet at its deepest point.
Arcadia Lake sits just east of Edmond, Oklahoma along Route 66 (2nd Street in Edmond). It is about 1.5 miles southwest of Arcadia, Oklahoma and stretches as far south as I-44 (the Turner Turnpike). Primary entrance points/campgrounds are on 2nd Street and 15th Street, east of I-35.
Boating - Launch from one of several Arcadia Lake boat ramps. There is a defined jet-skiing area, but many do not always obey that rule. Life jackets are required for anyone under the age of 13. From April 1 through Nov. 30, a boating permit is $7 ($6 on weekdays). The price is $6 everyday from Dec. 1 through Feb. 28/29. There are discounts for military and senior citizens.
Note that boaters also need to purchase a vehicle access pass. If you plan to go several times over the course of the year, ask about a yearly pass, as it will save you money. Contact (405) 216-7470 for more information.
Fishing - It is popular all year long at Arcadia, thanks to a heated fishing dock.
According to lake officials, there is an abundant amount of largemouth and striped bass, catfish, crappie and bluegill. Trotlines and jug lines are not allowed. Lake entry rates for fishing are the same as boating rates noted above.
Camping - There are over 140 campsites with a number of amenities for campers, including fire ring, picnic table and charcoal grill. "Primitive" sites don't include any water or electrical service while other campsites feature hookups and community water. "Full Hook-up" sites include electric, water and sewage connections. There are limits of two sleeping units, two vehicles, and ten people per site. Campsites are reserved on a first-come, first-serve basis. Call (405) 216-7474 to inquire about occupancy and availability.
Picnicking - One unique feature of Arcadia Lake is the presence of large pavilions. Equipped with grills, tables, electric and lights, they're perfect for small or large groups. Call (405) 216-7470 for pavilion reservation and pricing information.
Trails - Hike, ride or bike on Arcadia's 13 miles of multi-use, scenic trails. Hiking and biking cost $2 on weekdays and during the offseason, $3 on weekends. Horseback riding is $4. Don't get too far off the trails, though, or you'll have to worry about ticks and other creepy crawlers.
Swimming - Swimming beaches are open from sunrise to sundown. The water is very shallow in the swimming areas, so it works well for kids who love to build sand castles and cool off.
Programs and Special Events - From eagle-watching to a kids fishing derby, Arcadia has special events and programs throughout the year.