Tucked away by Knight’s Peak southwest of Colorado Springs, the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir is a picturesque alpine lake that occupies roughly 72 acres of Pike National Forest. This man made lake is popular for fishing, watching sunsets, and breathing in Teller County’s fresh mountain air, just one hour away from Colorado’s second largest city.
In 1932, the Broadmoor Hotel built the dam that created the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir to hold a capacity of roughly 2,537 acre-feet. 47 years later, Colorado Springs Utilities acquired the reservoir, diverting the water to nearby towns. Today, the reservoir and its shores are protected as a State Wildlife Area (SWA). It’s referred to as Rosemont Reservoir SWA.
Activities at Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir
A valid Colorado hunting/fishing or public lands license is required to enter all Colorado SWA’s including the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir. Onsite there is a parking lot with information, located on the southeast side of the reservoir along Gold Camp Road (County Route 8). To access the shore of the reservoir and the bathroom facilities, a short 0.5 mile walk is required.
Birding and Wildlife: The Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir is frequented by bald eagles, as well as a variety of bird species such as plovers, finches, and occasional waterfowl. Large game such as deer and elk are also often seen in the area.
Boating: Most boating is prohibited at the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir, with the exception of float tubes used for fishing.
Camping: Although it is surrounded by national forest land, camping at the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir is prohibited. The WYE Campground is nearby and maintained by the Pike National Forest.
Fishing: Licensed anglers can enjoy coldwater lake fishing from the shores or atop a float tube on the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir. Ice fishing is prohibited and lake access is closed when the water freezes over. During fishing season, visitors are likely to catch rainbow, brook, cutthroat and brown trout as well as catfish and carp.
Hiking: A brief and easy 0.5 mile hike is required to access the Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir from the parking lot. The slow ascent is not challenging, although gets increasingly steep as you approach the shore of the reservoir.
Picnicking: Picnicking is prohibited at the reservoir.
Swimming: Swimming, wading and all water contact activities are strictly prohibited at Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir.
Address: Penrose-Rosemont Reservoir, Colorado Springs, CO, 80906
Season: Ice melt to freeze, mid-May through October
Fishing Hours: 5:00 AM to 9:00 PM
Fees: Public Land or State Hunting/Fishing license required
Map & Information: Rosemont Reservoir SWA (PDF)