Oklahoma City's Lake Hefner

Lake Hefner Oklahoma City

Adam Knapp

Located in northwest Oklahoma City, Lake Hefner was built in 1947. In addition to being one of the city's reservoirs and one of the more popular ​lakes in the area, it is an excellent place for sailing, picnicking, recreation, and fishing. The lake often holds sailboat races and is home to extensive jogging trails, playgrounds, and a golf course.​​​


According to the City of Oklahoma City, Lake Hefner is 2,500 acres in size with an average depth of 29 feet. The lake's deepest point is approximately 94 feet.


Lake Hefner sits just west of the Lake Hefner Parkway as far north as Hefner Road and south past Wilshire. It is also accessible just northeast of the Northwest Expressway between MacArthur and Portland.


Lake Hefner is considered the premiere location for sailboating in the Oklahoma City area. From April to October, weekends bring sailboat races, and Hefner is home to the Oklahoma City Boat Club. The lake has docks as well as dry storage for boats. For information about the harbor or boat storage, call (405) 843-4976.

Daily boat permits are $6.25; annual permits are $33. Call (405) 297-2211 to speak with a Parks and Recreation representative regarding permits.


One of the more popular things to do at Lake Hefner is jog, walk, or bike. The Lake Hefner trails trace the entire lake and stretch just over 9 miles in total. They are 12 feet wide and asphalt, and the east side of the lake also contains some 6 feet wide trails specifically for pedestrians.

Play and Picnic

There are top-notch playgrounds and picnic areas all around Lake Hefner. Visitors can watch the colorful sail boats as they picnic or fly kites on the wide-open area of the wharfs.


Although the picnic areas and playgrounds are free, Lake Hefner visitors must have a city fishing permit to fish off the bank or the covered piers. A daily permit is $3.50; annually it's $18.50. Call (405) 297-2211 to speak with a Parks and Recreation representative regarding permits.

There is also an enclosed and heated fishing dock.

Stars and Stripes Park

On the southeast side of the lake is Stars and Stripes Park, home to the annual Turkey Trot Classic as well as a number of other recreational events from team sports to biking.

Lake Hefner Golf Course

Located on the southwest side of the lake, just off Northwest Expressway, the Lake Hefner Golf Course sports a north and a south course. The north course is nearly 7,000 yards in total length while the south course is a bit smaller at about 6,300.

There is a driving range, putting green, restaurant, golf shop and all the rentals you need. Call (405) 843-1565 for more information or get the greens fees online.


The golf course is not the only place to grab a bite at the lake. In fact, Hefner is a very popular location for dining, offering several restaurants with excellent views.

Nearby Hotels and Lodging

Traveling to Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City? Here are some hotel options nearby:

  • Extended Stay
    4811 Northwest Expressway
    Less than 2 miles from Lake Hefner
  • La Quinta
    4829 Northwest Expressway
    Less than 2 miles from Lake Hefner
  • Tower Hotel Oklahoma City
    3233 Northwest Expressway
    Less than 3 miles from Lake Hefner
  • Comfort Inn
    5704 Mosteller Drive
    Less than 3 miles from Lake Hefner
  • Hampton Inn
    3022 N.W. Expressway
    Less than 3 miles from Lake Hefner