Lake Powell is an artificial creation of the Glen Canyon Dam which began the 11 year flooding process in 1969. Up until that point the Colorado river had lightly meandered through the orange and red sandstone walls, slowly carving a valley which was eventually inhabited by the Anasazi people. The whole of the American Southwest is sprinkled with this ancient civilization's ruins and the Glen Canyon Recreation Area is no exception.
Lake Powell is one of the most popular recreation destinations in the country. Hiking and fishing are both very popular, and with over 90 side canyons, the lake presents visually unique and stunning experience for houseboat vacations. Camping on the beaches and hiking around the Glen Canyon Recreation Area is often the natural companion activity to boating. Guides are available for tours of the still surviving ruins and of the Rainbow Bridge National Monument, a sacred monument to the native people of the area.
The remoteness of Lake Powell means you're not likely to be doing any day camping. The vast majority of sightseeing and attractions around the lake are accessible only by foot or by boat, the latter being the overwhelming favorite. Far and away the best way to experience this place is on a houseboat vacation. All of the Lake Powell marinas offer houseboat rentals, two of which are easily accessed near the dam. You could even fly into Page and be on a boat within the hour, though the popularity of the activity means you'll need to plan your houseboat vacation well in advance.
The lake covers a large area in south central Utah. Its 1,960 miles of shoreline (more than the United States' entire west coast) stretch 180 miles northeast from the Utah/Arizona border. The drive to Lake Powell is long from any direction, but well worth the trip. There are two marinas at the southern tip of the lake near the dam and a third marina towards the north. Vastly separated highways lead to the two areas so its important to plan ahead.
To learn more about Lake Powell, select a topic of interest from the list to the left.
1-7 Day Vehicle Pass - $15
1-7 Day Individual Permit - $7 per person
Individual Permit (organized non-profit groups) - $7 per person
Glen Canyon NRA Annual Pass - $30
** Individuals 15 years of age and younger are admitted free. **
$30 - annual vessel permit valid from Jan 1- Dec 31 for each motorized vessel
$16 - valid 1-7 days for first motorized vessel
$8 - valid 1-7 days for each additional motorized vessel
**All National Park Passes, Golden Eagle, Golden Eagle Hologram, Golden Access and Golden Age Passports will continue to be honored according to the provisions of the pass.**