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part ofMelvern Lake, US Army Corps of Engineers
Status: Closed through Tue Mar 31 2015   Season Dates


Outlet Campground is situated below the Melvern Lake Dam on the eastern edge of the Flint Hills of Kansas. Visitors enjoy the area's wide range of recreational activities, including boating, fishing, hiking and hunting.

Natural Features:

The Flint Hills represent America's last expanse of intact tallgrass prairie, made up of big bluestem, switchgrass and Indian grass. The rolling hills on the south side of the lake are wooded, and the campground has scattered trees and limited shade.


Melvern Lake impounds nearly 7,000 acres of water on the upper reaches of the Marais des Cygnes River Valley. Boating and swimming are popular activities on the lake.

Anglers will find walleye, crappie, channel and flathead catfish, as well as black, striped, white and smallmouth bass.

The 18,000 acres of land surrounding Melvern Lake provide plentiful hiking and hunting opportunities. Several trails wind around the lake, including the 4-mile Tallgrass Heritage Trail, which begins in the campground. Hunters may find deer, quail, turkeys, ducks, rabbits and squirrels throughout the area.


This large campground offers 140 family sites, many of which have full hookups for electric, water and sewer. Two group sites are available as well, one for overnight camping and the other for day-use. Several family picnic sites can be used on a first come, first served basis.

Amenities include flush and vault toilets, showers, drinking water and a dump station. A boat ramp, accessible dock and fish cleaning station are located on-site.

Younger campers love the park's swimming beach, playground and stocked fishing pond, which is open year-round.

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Activities and Amenities

Within Facility
  • Accessible Fishing Dock
  • Accessible Flush Toilets
  • Accessible Showers
  • Accessible Swimming
  • Accessible Vault Toilets
  • Amphitheater
  • Baseball Fields
  • Beach Access
  • Boat Ramp
  • Boating
  • Drinking Water
  • Dump Station
  • Electric Hookups
  • Entrance Station
  • Fish Cleaning Stations
  • Fishing
  • Flush Toilets
  • Hiking
  • Host
  • Interpretive Trails
  • Laundry Facilities
  • Parking Area
  • Pay Phone
  • Picnic Shelters
  • Playground
  • Showers
  • Vault Toilets
Know Before You Go
Operation of any vehicle that is not properly licensed is prohibited at Melvern Lake. This includes golf carts, motorcycles, scooters, mopeds, motorized skateboards, electric bicycles, or any other vehicle typically designed for off road or recreational use.

In 2011, it was discovered that Melvern Lake had been infested with zebra mussels. The Zebra mussel is an invasive species in the U.S. and Kansas has adopted new laws to help to alleviate this problem. It is extremely important to keep your vessels clean and drained dry of any water collected while boating in infested waters to avoid spreading this nuisance species. For more information, contact the project office (www.nwk.usace.army.mil/me) at 785-549-3318 or Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism at www.kdwpt.state.ks.us/.
  • Special creel and length limits are enforced on the park fishing pond
  • Call the Melvern Lake Project Office at 785-549-3318 with additional questions
    • Don't Move Firewood: Protect your forests from tree-killing pests by buying your firewood locally and burning it on-site. Visit Dontmovefirewood.org for further information.

    Getting There:

    GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
    38.51371, -95.70624
    38°30'49"N, 95°42'22"W

    From US-75, take the Melvern exit. Turn west onto Melvern Lake Parkway and continue 1/4 mile to the cut-off road, then another 1/4-mile west to River Pond Parkway and follow into the campground.

    Contact Information:

    Mailing Address:

    30442 River Pond Parkway
    MELVERN  KS  66510

    Phone Number:

    Information:  (785)549-3318
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    Bureau of Land Management Federal Highway Administration National Oceanic Atmosphere Administration Smithsonian Institution USDA Forest Service US Army Corps of Engineers US Fish and Wildlife Service National Park Service Bureau of Engraving and Printing Tennessee Valley Authority Bureau of Reclamation National Archives Records Administration