Camping doesn't get much better than sitting on a secluded, sandy beach at Apache Lake, listening to the water lap at your boat and falling asleep under the stars. We try to get out there once every couple of years or so, motoring far away from the shoreline-picnickers. Numerous dry arroyos run into the lake from the surrounding desert, and we've found a few good ones with plentiful, coarse sand that make the perfect platform for an air mattress or two. Apache Lake doesn't have an endless supply of sandy beaches — you may have to share your spot — but it's usually much better for camping than other lakes in the Phoenix area. Canyon Lake is too canyon-y and Saguaro Lake's sparse beaches are a long boat drive down a no-wake zone. You'd think Roosevelt Lake, being the biggest of the Roosevelt Dam reservoirs, would have the best beaches, but it just ain't so — particularly after our wet winter, which flooded beaches and cluttered the shorelines with debris. Apache Lake, however, still has some great camping sites on its shores. When sleeping without a tent next to a lake in the desert, our only worry is whether a ringtail cat will snag the Cheerios out of our backpack (again).

Location Details

State Highway 88 at Forest Road 183
Roosevelt AZ 85545


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