Kaw Wildlife Management Area

By: Ron Folks, biologist at Kaw and John Dahl WMAs.  Phone: (405) 823-7936.

Area Description:
Kaw WMA covers 16,254 acres adjoining the upper two thirds of Kaw Lake in eastern Kay County in north central Oklahoma . Located just four and one half miles east of Newkirk , Oklahoma, Kaw WMA is a mixture of upland and bottomland forest, tallgrass prairie, old fields, and cropland.

Bluestem grasses and post oak- blackjack forests are predominate on upland sites, which are interspersed with sand plum thickets and agricultural fields. Bottom land forests consist of burr oak, hackberry, sycamore, sand plum and other species. The average annual precipitation for the area is 30 inches per year.  

WMA Driving Directions:

West arm – From Newkirk: 4½ miles east on E. River Rd (E0090).

South area – From Ponca City: 2 miles north on U.S. Hwy 77, 6 miles east on Sate Hwy 11, 2 miles north on Enterprise Rd, ¼ mi east on E0150.

East arm – From Newkirk: 13 miles east on E. River Rd (E0090).

Game Species of Interest: 

Pheasant: Very few present, most often taken as a bonus for quail hunters. 

Quail: Bobwhite quail occur in fair numbers during most years.  

Deer: White-tailed deer are abundant and highly sought after. 

Turkey: Rio Grande turkeys are present in good numbers and highly sought after.

Rabbit: Cottontails are usually present in good numbers.  

Furbearers: Coyote, bobcat, and raccoon are plentiful. 

Dove: Good dove hunting is usually available. 

Waterfowl: Ducks and geese are usually available in good numbers. 

Squirrel: The fox squirrel is present in good numbers.

Nongame Species of Interest:

Greater Prairie Chicken: Present, but only in low numbers. 

Bald Eagle: One of Kaw Lake’s most popular winter attractions is the American Bald Eagle. Traditionally, Kaw Lake has one of the states largest populations of wintering bald eagles. Numerous sites around the lake offer visitors excellent opportunities to view our nation’s symbol. Peak viewing opportunities occur in January. 

Osprey: Commonly observed along the shoreline in early fall.  

Upland sandpiper: Present in low numbers on the east side of the WMA.

Texas Horned Lizard: Present in low numbers on the east side of the WMA.

Description of Fish and Wildlife Management Practices:
Approximately 4,000 acres of wheat, milo, soybeans, and corn are planted annually through an agricultural lease program.  Twenty four hundred acres of Japanese millet are planted annually on mud flats scheduled to be inundated as the millet matures. The intent of this practice is to increase waterfowl habitat. Trees and shrubs are planted annually to provide cover for upland species and break up large agricultural fields. 

Camping and Facilities:
Several primitive camping sites are available free of charge on the WMA. These sites are mowed in the early fall. Nine public use areas are available around the lake. Campers can select from over 250 campsites, many of which are equipped with water and electric hookups. Reservations for these campsites can be obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Ten boat ramps provide boaters with easy access to Kaw Lake. Once on the water, boaters can find two full service marinas located at Pioneer Park and McFadden Cove.  The number for the Corps project office at Kaw is 580-762-5611.

Fishing Opportunities:
Kaw Lake and the Arkansas River have long been known for producing some of Oklahoma’s largest catfish. The flathead, blue and channel catfish all reside in the lake. Kaw Lake also offers anglers excellent opportunities to catch crappie, sand bass, black bass and walleye. The lake covers 17,000 surface acres and has 168 miles of shoreline.

Maps:

Kaw WMA Map - best general purpose map, pdf format (8.5x11)

Information on the lake and surrounding area

Area map courtesy of US Army Corp of Engineers
 

Regulations: Seasons on public lands section of hunting regulations

Kaw WMA - Outdoor Oklahoma Magazine Article (Jan/Feb 2006)

For additional information and area attractions:

Bartlesville Area Convention and Visitors Bureau
201 SW Keeler
PO Box 2366, Bartlesville OK 74005
918-336-8708
1-877-273-2004
 

Kaw Lake Association
877-671-6985
580-762-9494
www.kawlake.com
kawlake@kskc.net
4128 Lake Road Ponca City 74602

Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department
Post Office Box 52002
Oklahoma City, OK 73152-2002
(800) 652-6552 or (405) 521-2409
www.travelok.com

Perry Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 426 Perry 73077
580-336-4684
www.perryok.org
information@perrychamber.ok

Ponca City Tourism
516 E Grand Avenue
866-762-8092
www.poncacitytourism.com

Ponca City Chamber of Commerce
www.poncacitychamber.com