Photo Credit Robert Lemmon
Woodward Reservoir Kayak, Canoe, SUP & Kayak Fishing Information
Area Map #94 Miles of Shoreline: 23 Reservoir Surface Acres: 3240 Elevation: 210’ Address: 14528 26th Mile Road Oakdale, CA 95361 Ph: 209 847-3304
This low elevation reservoir located in a flat grassy meadow has a similar terrain as Modesto Reservoir and Turlock Lake. Woodward Reservoir is my favorite of the three locations because it has tree-shaded campsites overlooking the reservoir, a minimal amount of boat traffic and three boat launches, which allows you to paddle the reservoir sections at a time.
The huge drawback is the bathrooms were filthy among the worst campground bathrooms I have ever seen, and the boat launch area is packed at sun down. The campground is noisy due to the lack of enforcement of quiet hours. The boat launch by Sailboat Cove is the best location for novice paddlers to launch from. It is about ten miles around the eastern arm, and you can easily paddle across the narrow arm. Plus, most of the eastern arm has a 5 m.p.h. boat speed limit.
When the reservoir is at full water level capacity, it’s about twenty-three miles around the entire perimeter. NOTE: Kayaks and canoes must remain within two-hundred feet of the shoreline at all times. Effective Tuesday, March 27, 2012, the restriction of no body-to-water (human or animal) contact has been lifted at Woodward Reservoir.
The few times I have been to Woodward Reservoir it was surprisingly crowded for being such an unattractive looking reservoir. It gets hotter than blazes here in the summertime.
The reservoir is well known for its holdover rainbow trout and smallmouth bass populations. The Department of Fish and Game only plants 4,800 rainbow trout per year, so I can’t imagine the fishing is what is drawing the crowds. Other fish species found here consist of largemouth bass, black crappie, perch and channel catfish.
Open: Woodward Reservoir is open daily all year for boating one hour before sunrise to one-half hour after sunset. There is no posted boat speed limit. Campground is open year round. November 1st to March 1st unlimited camping stay.
Fees: There is a day use, launch, pet and camping fee at Woodward Reservoir.
Lake Facilities: The facilities consist of a snack bar, a grocery store, a full-service marina, three boat launches, fishing, and power-boating. Until further notice, all body-to-water (human or animal) contact is prohibited at Woodward Reservoir. Visitors enjoy fishing, boating, waterskiing, and jet skiing.