Clinton Wildlife Area

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A majority of the land lies within the Clinton Reservoir flood pool. Deer Creek, Rock Creek and the Wakarusa River are the three main drainages into Clinton Lake that flow through the wildlife area. There is a mix of native grassland, deciduous forest and cropland dispersed throughout these drainages.

Two man-made wetland complexes are found on the wildlife area. The oldest is the Coblentz Marsh Complex, which consists of the original West Coblentz marsh and the more recent East Coblentz marsh totaling around 160 acres in 5 different pools. These are located on the north side of the Wakarusa River and immediately east of the Shawnee-Douglas county line in Douglas County. The Elk Creek Marsh complex was completed in 2008 after several years of construction. These marshes are located on the south side of the Wakarusa River and are accessed from the parking lot located at Boat Ramp #9. The complex consists of 4 different marsh pools that total approximately 300 acres when full. The largest and newest pool is just over 100 acres in size and is located within the area's seasonal Refuge. All wetland cells except the refuge marsh can be filled by pumping water out of the Wakarusa River.

Management of native grassland is very important on the Clinton Wildlife Area. Clinton has over 200 acres of historical native prairie, most all of the non-native cool season grasslands have been converted to warm season native grasses and wildflowers.

Primary species hunted on the area include deer, turkey, waterfowl, mourning dove, bobwhite quail, squirrel, and rabbit. Also, a wide array of non-game birds, mammals, reptiles, and amphibians can be found on the area or migrating through. Trapping, fishing, and wildlife viewing are also popular past times on the area.

205 N. 1600 Rd.
Lecompton,KS    66050
Area News - Updated: 07/31/2015

DON'T FORGET ABOUT I-SPORTSMAN! Clinton Wildlife Area is utilizing an electronic check-in system. To register, please go to This is mandatory for all hunting activities. This system allows us to better gather harvest and usage data to help make better management decisions.


Dove season begins Sept 1st. Starting this year, all fields are NON-TOXIC shot.  One field is closed on September 1st for a youth dove hunt, but will open to everyone on September 2nd.  All other fields open on September 1st.  Check the map below for locations of all dove fields.  Happy dove hunting!!

For wetland and waterfowl info please see 

Please remember that trapping is also permitted on the Wildlife Area

2015 Dove Field Map

General Information
205 N. 1600 Rd.
Lecompton, KS    66050

Clinton Reservoir & WA (PDF 2.15 MB)

Area Manager: Justin Hamilton

Office Phone: 785-887-6882

Clinton Wildlife Area is located approximately 7 miles west of Lawrence on the upper end of Clinton Reservoir

Special Regulations
  • Camping, off-road vehicle use, and target shooting are prohibited.
  • Please take all trash with you.
  • Refuge area is closed to all activities from October 1st thru January 15th.
  • A free daily hunting permit is required to hunt on the area.  The permit is obtained through

Special Features

  • Handicapped hunting area provides vehicle use in designated area with written permission from Area Manager.
  • Horseback riding is allowed on the southeast side of the Rock Creek Arm on designated trails only which are primarily located in the Corps of Engineers' Rockhaven Park.

Here is a complete list of Public Land Regulations or you can download the regulation summary.


Clinton Reservoir was completed by the US Army Corps of Engineers in 1977. Approximately 9,000 acres are managed by KDWPT for use as a public Wildlife Area.

Clinton Facilities
Wakarusa River Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: N38 53.552 W 95 28.805
  • Click for more information

    Boat ramp for upper Wakarusa River and Elk Creek Wetlands access.

Rock Creek Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: N38 52.786 W95 24.591
  • Click for more information

    Boat ramp for Rock Creek area access

Coon Creek Boat Ramp
  • Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
  • Location of Facility: N38 56.488 W95 24.468
  • Click for more information

    Boat ramp for Deer Creek area access

Clinton Trails
Rock Creek Horse Trail
  • Trail Season: April through September
  • Length of Trail: 10 mile(s)
  • Trail Activities: Horse Riding
  • There is camping located near the trail
  • Location of Start: N38 53.445 W 95 22.601
  • Click for more information

    Horse trail is open seasonally and is located on southeast side of Rock Creek arm of lake. Trail head is in Rockhaven Park.

    Camping can be found at Corps of Engineers Rockhaven Park

Clinton Waterfowl Report - 11/13/2015
Waterfowl numbers

Around 450 ducks were seen on the survey this week.  The ducks were on the lake to the north and west of bloomington park. Their were several mallards, pintails, gadwalls, and a few redheads and scaup.  They still seem to be spending the majority of their time on the refuge at elk creek. Around 80 canada geese were also seen on the survey.

Mallard Index (0 - 10) = 1

Lake level 877.16 (1.65 feet above conservation pool).
Hunting conditions


Clinton Wildlife area marshes have water!!

Elk Creek marshes- Pools one and two are full. We are currently refilling pool three after removing a leaky water control structure. Waterfowl numbers in the marsh complexes are good.

Coblentz marshes - The north, middle, and east pool are all around 80% full.  The little southeast pool at the main complex is about 50% full and the little southwest pool at the main complex is about 30% full. We are currently pumping a little more water into all the pools.

Shadden marsh- is also full of water

Expected hunting success  

IMPORTANT! Clinton Wildlife Area is utilizing an electronic check-in system required of all hunters. To register, please go to This will be mandatory for everyone hunting the wildlife area, not just waterfowl hunters. The card survey stations have been removed. Plan ahead and sign up for I-sportsman now.  

Please remember that trapping is also allowed on the Wildlife Area.

The Refuge area will be closed to ALL activities from October 1st - January 15th.

Dove Fields Map

2015 Clinton Wildlife Area Dove Map