US Army Corps of Engineers
New England District Website



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Recreation Facilities/Activities

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers welcomes you to Colebrook River Lake located on the scenic West Branch of the Farmington River in Colebrook, Connecticut. Colebrook River Lake Access Road is normally open between the hours of 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The boat ramp and reservoir areas are open daylight hours only.

Opportunities for recreation at Colebrook River Lake include an average 700-acre lake that is open seasonally for fishing and boating and has a large boat ramp available. Massachusetts and Connecticut fishing licenses accepted, Connecticut regulations apply.

The lake and river are stocked with brown, rainbow and brook trout and also contains largemouth and smallmouth bass, northern pike chain pickerel, catfish and pan fish. Either a Massachusetts or Connecticut fishing license may be used in the reservoir up to the old Route 8 bridge, though a Massachusetts license is required upstream of the bridge. This project is managed in close coordination with the Hartford Metropolitan District Commission (MDC). The hydroelectric power facility was constructed at the dam by the MDC under a federal license. The project is located on Connecticut Route 8 from the Town of Winsted.

Natural Resources

Corps personnel manage the natural resources at Colebrook River Lake through a multiple-use approach. The 388 acres of federal lands are not only managed for recreation, but for the the benefit of forest and wildlife resources. Wildlife food plots, nesting boxes, open area patch mowing and forest thinning are several techniques used to provide wildlife with food, cover and nesting habitat. The MDC owns and manages the remaining reservoir lands.

The forest are made up of a wide variety of trees, including white pine, maple, oak, hickory, ash, and dogwood.

A variety of wildlife species are found in the wildlife refuge and throughout the reservoir area. White-tailed deer, black bear, beaver, red fox, racoon, grey squirrel, cottontail rabbits, mink and muskrat. Bird watchers may observe many species including osprey, great blue heron, egrets, turkey, ruffed grouse and bald eagle. In the wetland area Canada and snow geese, mallard, and wood ducks can be seen during season migrations.

Forest Management includes thinning, selective cutting and reforestation. These practices improve timber quality and enhance wildlife habitat. The dominant forest species include eastern white pine, hemlock, red oak, sugar and red maple, black, yellow, and white birch, ash, black cherry, shagbark and pignut hickory.Visit the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection Bureau of Natural Resources Wildlife Division on the web to learn even more about Connecticut's Wildlife.

Updated: July 9, 2020



Latest Updates

Recreation Area Updates  - Please click here to access the latest information.


Beginning June 24, 2020 the following will be open:

  • Main entrance will be open 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday - Friday.
  • North End & Boat Launch will be open day during light hours only, 7 days per week.
  • For National Park Passes, please call the office ahead of time as we are selling passes by appointment only


-Updated: July 6, 2020



Colebrook River Lake
P.O. Box 58
Riverton, CT 06065
Phone: (860) 379-8234
Fax: (860) 379-6436
Colebrook River Lake Directions

Park Staff:
Park Manager John Haluchak