Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Guided tours
Backcountry camping
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Rye Patch State Recreation Area is a space around the Rye Patch Dam and Reservoir area of the Humboldt River that is open to boating, fishing, and camping, and it has a couple of short hiking trails and day-use opportunities. Set in an otherwise sparsely populated section of Interstate 80 between the towns of Lovelock and Winnemucca, Rye Patch Reservoir covers about 12,000 acres at full storage. Ryegrass once served ranchers and emigrants along the Applegate Trail here. The reservoir has been a source of controversy: its diverts water for agricultural use in the Lovelock area, and it has flooded an area that is thought to contain significant archaeological fossils from an era when the massive Lake Lahontan covered the region and species such as camels and horses drank from its waters.

Today, the recreation area contains day-use picnicking and boat launch facilities, along with having two campgrounds - the Westside Campground adjacent to the reservoir and boat launch area and River Campground in a shady area just downstream of the reservoir. There is also a calm beach area for wading, and there are dispersed camping areas along the further fringes of the recreation area. Aside from watersports, fishing here may turn up some of the crappy, walleye, channel catfish, white bass, and black bass living in the reservoir. An day-use entrance fee of $5 per vehicle applies. Boat launch use and camping also have additional fees.

Aside from gas stations located at the freeway exit and the local bar, the nearest amenities are located in Lovelock or Winnemucca, so plan ahead.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Park entrance fee

Open Year-round



Boating. Few crowds. Camping options.


Minimal amenities.


ADA accessible
Vault toilet
Boat ramp(s)
Backcountry camping
Rental facilities
Flushing toilets
Family friendly
Dump stations
Picnic tables
Near lake or river
Covered picnic areas
Potable water


Nearby Adventures

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Rye Patch State Recreation Area
Rye Patch State Recreation Area


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