Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area in Ashley National Forest - Utah National forest, National Recreation Area, Camping, Hiking, Water sports

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Almost equally divided between Utah and Wyoming, Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area contains 207,363 acres of land and water. Originally established by Congress in 1968, the most popular feature of this recreation area is Flaming Gorge Reservoir. This reservoir has five full-service marinas that offer launching, storage and maintenance facilities. You can go boating, fishing, skiing, jet skiing, house boating and participate in several other water sports.

Flaming Gorge is famous for trophy lake trout, a large number of thirty pound and over fish are caught every year. Fishing is also good for rainbows, brown trout, kokanee salmon and smallmouth bass. The lake is also famous for the beautiful red rock mountains rising around it.

Managed by the US Forest Service as part of the Ashley National Forest, the area offers other recreational activities besides what's available at the reservoir. There is camping and rock climbing, hiking and visits to the dam. Rising 502 feet above bedrock, Flaming Gorge Dam blocks waters of the Green River to form the reservoir, which extends as far as ninety one miles to the north. The hiking trails wind through meadows, tree-covered slopes, and mountain peaks above timberline. The five-mile Canyon Rim Trail is accessible from the Greendale Overlook, Skull Creek Campground, or Greens Lake Campground.

Within the Ashley National Forest, the forest is thick with evergreen trees, pinyon pines, and junipers. Below the lake, the Green River is renowned for trout fishing and rafting. Neither a permit nor commercial guides are required for rafting, and rental rafts are available nearby.

Located in the northeast corner of Utah and the southwest corner of Wyoming, this area is South of I-80, between Green River and Rock Springs, Wyoming. It extends into the Uintah Mountains towards Vernal, Utah.Get to the area via I-80, twenty miles south of Green River. Turn south on either Highway 530, or Highway 191.

Park Statistics:

Open - Daily 24 hrs

Campgrounds - forty three, over 700 individual campsites and 27 group sites. Some sites are on the water, some in the mountains. There is also room for "primitive'' camping.

Reservoir - total capacity of 3,788,900 acre-feet, at full elevation of 6,045 feet, it has a surface area of 42,020 acres.

Fees - yes. Day use, camping and annual passes available.

Summer temperature highs - 80's

Motel accommodations - yes, near Dutch John and nearby Manila

One February 2009 reviewer said, "Flaming Gorge has it all. From the scenic headwaters of the Green River that Powell discovered through the beautiful Firehole area, the camera gets used a lot. Fishing is great for large pan sized rainbow trout. Lakers go over 50 pounds from your boat which is handy on the 95 mile long gorge. Camping is everywhere. Lots of deer, elk, and wild horses if you take the time to slow down and look for them. The drive around the gorge and stop for the dam tour should take all day if you do it correctly which is the way I did and recommend to others. The stay in Rock Springs was rewarding. There is much there to do as well.''

Another online reviewer stated, "The Flaming Gorge WAS beautiful! It was a long drive from the east entrance to the best part of it but once we got there it was perfect. We don't camp or didn't have a boat there but looked like a great place to do both! There was a nice visitor's center at the Dam; it was all a nice surprise! Just remember driving the whole thing took us about 3 hrs stopping and starting but was worth it!''

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