Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area Visitors' Guide

Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area came under the shared management of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife & United States Bureau of Reclamation in 1962. It is managed for the protection and enhancement of wildlife habitat, big game winter range, improving riparian wetlands, and to promote wildlife stewardship. Goals of the PRWA include creating recreational opportunities for viewing and enjoying wildlife, including mule deer, bald eagles, and a variety of waterfowl. Boating, hiking, and camping are a few popular activities permitted in the wildlife management area. Hunting and fishing opportunities are also available within Prineville Reservoir Wildlife Area, as regulated by ODFW.

Best time to visit: April - October for fishing. May - September for bird viewing. Winter for viewing mule deer. Vehicle access is closed to most of the area November 15 - April 15.

Visiting hours: always open

What to see and do: Prineville Wildlife Area provides excellent bird viewing opportunities. Bird species include shorebirds, songbirds, waterfowl and raptors including golden eagles, prairie falcons, bald eagles, osprey, northern flickers, mountain bluebirds, California quail, kingfishers, tree swallows, and Brewers Blackbirds. Mule deer can be observed during the winter while bucks are still carrying their antlers. The reservoir contains hatchery rainbow trout, large and small mouth bass, brown bullhead, and black crappie. Five dispersed camping sites are located along the north shore of the reservoir.

  • Wildlife: mule deer, Rocky Mountain elk, coyotes, cougar, bobcat, bald eagles, golden eagles, red tailed hawk
  • Facilities: campground, fishing, hunting, picnic area, pets allowed
  • Nearby: Additional camping is available at Prineville Reservoir State Park.

Directions: From Prineville, take Paulina Highway 1.7 miles. Turn right onto Juniper Canyon Road at the Prineville Reservoir State Park sign. Take Juniper Canyon Road 12.5 miles to Prineville Reservoir State Park. Access to the wildlife area is a primitive dirt road in the northeast corner of the state park. Visitors also may continue southeast along Paulina Highway for 15 miles (from Prineville) and turn right at the bottom of the hill after passing Eagle Rock near milepost 14 onto the signed wildlife area primitive roadway.

Address and Phone:
Prineville Wildlife Management Area
2042 SE Paulina Highway
Prineville, OR 97754-9701
(541) 447-5111