Kingman State Fishing Lake
Kingman State Fishing Lake offers excellent fishing for largemouth bass, bluegill, redear, northern pike, and channel catfish. Special length limits and creel limits are posted at the lake entrance. The area also has numerous ponds that hold fish. These are indicated on the area map and can provide excellent fishing for largemouth bass, channel catfish, and bluegill. Take a kid to one of the ponds and you're guaranteed a good day. Picnic tables, firerings, toilets, and a group shelter are available for visitors. Two boat launching facilities are located on the east side of the lake.
Camping on State Fishing Lakes in Kansas is generally only primitive. No designated sites are available and no hookups are provided. At Kingman State Fishing Lake, camping is all primitive on a first-come first-served basis. There is no fee and picnic tables, fire rings, and primitive toilets are available. Campers should realize that State Fishing Lakes differ greatly from State Parks where full-service sites are provided and fees are collected. There is no dump station at Kingman State Fishing Lake and trash is a carry in/carry out requirement. Generators are allowed, however, quiet hours are from 11:00p.m. to 6:00a.m. and generators are not to be run during those time constraints. Office hours are generally 8:00 a.m. to 4:30p.m. though the Manager(only full-time staff) is frequently working on the area and not available.
ANS ALERT! White perch have been found in the lake. Fishermen need to know that possession of live white perch is prohibited. Dead white perch may be possessed or used as bait on the waters where they were taken.
ANS ALERT! Zebra mussels have been found in Cheney, Marion, and El Dorado reservoirs. If you have visited these reservoirs, be sure you have cleaned or dried your boat and other equipment as indicated on signs posted at both boat ramps before launching at Kingman State Fishing Lake. Do not transport bait or bait water from those reservoirs to Kingman.
Kingman State Fishing Lake News
2023 Lake Salvage:
ATTENTION! KINGMAN STATE LAKE'S FISH POPULATION WAS TERMINATED ON AUGUST 2, 2023. THE LAKE WILL BE TEMPORARILY CLOSED TO FISHING. PLEASE DO NOT FISH, WADE, SWIM, OR OTHERWISE COME IN CONTACT WITH THE WATER IN THE LAKE UNTIL AFTER AUGUST 16.
Beginning February 6, 2023 a fish salvage order was opened on Kingman State Fishing Lake. Due to a severe imbalance in the existing fish population where common carp, gizzard shad, and bullhead have dominated the fishery, all length and creel limits have been removed for all species. This salvage order will remain in effect until the fisheries division removes it some time between April and June 2023. All normally illegal activities such as snagging, hand fishing, jugging, and seigning REMAIN ILLEGAL. This salvage order is in effect for the State Fishing Lake only. All length and creel limits still persist on the river, oxbows, and ponds on the area. As of May 10, 2023 the lake is low enough that neither boat ramp is useable. Please do not try to launch trailered boats until notified that the water level is back to where boats may again be launched. As of May 25, the lake is 5-6 feet low. Most of the shoreline is dry with 20 to 50 yards between the normal bank and the current water's edge. Vehicles, fires, and any other normally used in campground equipment needs to remain in the campground.
Anyone that has driven through the lake in the past month or so has noticed we have been removing all the trees near the dam. This is not due to a hatred for trees, but a need to keep tree roots from penetrating the dam and causing leaks, or worse yet, a breach in the dam. The dam maintenance protocol calls for all woody plants to be removed on the dam and out from the toe of the dam 50 feet. This should keep the dam safe and strong for the foreseeable future. The big log piles will be allowed to cure then burned in a year or so. We will use a combination of mowing and spraying to keep woody plants from invading that 50-foot zone as needed. We will be seeding the disturbed soil back to native grass species that will keep that soil from moving. On the opposite end of the spectrum, 3 prospective Eagle Scouts planted 8 new shade trees in the campground and also stained all the wood on the restrooms and shelter house and installed all the new fire rings that have a concrete bottom in them. Out on the wildlife area, we stocked 400 nine-to-ten-inch channel catfish into 5 of the area ponds. These fish should keep filling the niche as bigger fish are taken out.
New Handicapped Campsite:
During the summer of 2018, Brandon Mengel, seasonal employee at Kingman State Fishing Lake, designed and built a handicapped campsite in the KMSL campground. The site offers a hardened site for a tent, fire ring, handicap accessible table, and hardened site for one vehicle (camper). The campsite is in close proximity to one of the new rock fishing jetties and includes hardened access from the campsite to the jetty. Hopefully next summer we will add the toe board edging to the jetty.
Winter Repairs and Improvements:
Last winter we responded quickly to the damage caused by the September and October floods and repaired the road damage to the road below the dam as well as the river access off of NW 90 Avenue. Further, we put new surface material on the upper lakeshore road as well as a good part of State Lake Road. These improvements should make travel on these roads safer and more dependable during wet periods. The storm siren passed it's spring weather awareness test and should be ready to warn campers and fishermen should severe storms approach.
Fishermen should immediately notice that the lake has been staying full for the last 2 seasons. This is not just due to the abundant rainfall we have been receiving. We completed the marsh project north and west of the lake in December 2017 and were able to re-establish the lake level by adding back the top 1 foot that we had to hold the lake down in order to drain and work in those marshes.
New Handicap Accesible Jetty Available:
The Byron Walker Wildlife Area, located seven miles West of Kingman on Highway 54, is one of the great attractions for the city of Kingman and for Kingman County. The Kingman State Fishing Lake, and its associated recreation area, is the focal point of the 4,600 acre recreation area. The west side of the lake is open for waterfowl hunting during hunting season. The lake itself is stocked with crappie, bass, pike, sunfish, and channel catfish for the anglers delight. There are picnic tables, fire pits, camping areas, four fishing jetties, two boat ramps with launching docks, a large shelter house suitable for larger parties or gatherings, and three nice, clean toilet facilities for your families’ comfort.
However, until recently (Nov '10), there was still something lacking. It was difficult for a handicapped individual to be able to get close enough to the waters’ edge to fish. Carl Jamieson, a local disabled fisherman, contacted Troy Smith, the Wildlife Area Manager, to discuss this shortcoming and see if something could be done to help handicapped sportsmen. Mr. Smith discussed having to remove the floating docks a few years earlier because they had become dangerous and had outlived their life span. He also indicated that he had been submitting budget proposals annually to get them replaced, but funding was not available. Mr. Jamieson asked if he might investigate the option of seeking donated materials, and was given the green light to proceed. A design was developed to construct a handicapped accessible surface on one of the existing jetties if the materials could be found at a reduced cost or donated. Mr. Jamieson started making phone calls. The first thing he was able to find was the framework material. Rick Yoder of Jayhawk Oilfield Supply not only supplied 14 lengths of 4 inch by 38 foot long oil well casing, but also delivered it to the lake at the northern most jetty, the site chosen for the construction. A couple more calls and Christy from Arensdorf Lumber dba Kingman Lumber donated 100 feet of ½ inch rebar to be used as bracing for the framework. Once the idea of the handicapped accessible fishing jetty was published in the paper under Letters to the Editor, Dan Hacker of Hacker Brothers Construction stepped forward and volunteered the material that was needed to create a smooth surface for wheel chairs and delivered 25 tons of GE, a compactable gravel, to the site. A couple more phone calls and Terry Schrag of Cannonball donated 300 feet of 1&1/2 inch square stock to construct the safety railings for the project.
Without the compassion and generosity of these people and their companies this project would never have happened. They eagerly stepped forward and supplied all of the necessary materials for the project. They all deserve our appreciation and a huge vote of thanks and support.
Once all the materials needed were acquired, the on-site work began in earnest last fall. The rip rap (rock) that is the main base of the jetty was repositioned around the edges to make a suitable base for the pipe form. The perimeter of the jetty was dredged to allow deeper fishing water close to the jetties edge and to inhibit water lily growth. The framework was finished and placed, the GE rock spread out and compacted, and the railings fabricated and installed. A barrier was put up to prevent vehicles from driving out onto the jetty, handicapped parking signs were installed, and a sidewalk was poured to allow easy access for wheel chairs from the two handicapped parking spots. The new jetty development is located just west of the two cabins at the North East end of the lake to allow easy access. All this new facility lacks is the fishermen, and not just handicapped fishermen. It is open to all.
- Motorized boating is restricted to fishing only and a "no-wake" policy is enforced.
- The possession and consumption of alcohol and cereal malt beverages is prohibited on the area.
Special Features: A waterfowl refuge is maintained on the eastern two-thirds of the lake, including the campground area. The campground is all primitive with no hardened sites or hookups. The lake and surrounding wildlife area are ranked in the top 13 areas for wildlife viewing in Kansas
The 144 acre Kingman State Fishing Lake is located seven miles west of Kingman, along the South Fork of the Ninnescah River.
- Type of Facility: Shelter
- Location of Facility: N37 39.266 W98 15.395
- Type of Facility: Vault Toilet
- Location of Facility: N37 39.393 W98 15.377
- Type of Facility: Vault Toilet
- Location of Facility: N37 39.267 W98 15.446
- Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
- Location of Facility: N37 39.269 W98 15.463
- Type of Facility: Vault Toilet
- Location of Facility: N37 39.064 W98 15.312
- Type of Facility: Boat Ramp
- Location of Facility: N37 39.049 W98 15.307