Page Springs Fish Hatchery
Nestled among the cool pines of the Coconino National Forest, the Page Springs Fish Hatchery offers a cool retreat from the desert during hot summer months. Families enjoy hiking the nature trial bordering Oak Creek, and kids like visiting the show ponds to see the hatchery’s finest and largest trout.
At 82 acres, this is the state’s largest coldwater fish production facility, producing nearly 700,000 trout a year. The property also includes a smaller warm water hatchery, Bubbling Ponds. In recent years, Bubbling Ponds produced sportfish such as bluegill, largemouth bass, and walleye, and sensitive species such as razorback suckers and Colorado pikeminnow used by the department in native fish conservation and recovery efforts. Recreational Opportunities – Day Use Only The hatchery includes an interpretive center and a self-guided hatchery tour, finishing in a visit to the show ponds. These amenities are accessible to the disabled. The hatchery is open 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., seven days a week (closed Thanksgiving and Christmas).
A recently completed nature trail, with signs describing riparian habitat and wildlife, meanders through the hatchery grounds and along Oak Creek. The trail is a great place to see wildlife and view birds.
Camping: There are no camping facilities at the hatchery. However, camping areas are available nearby on Forest Service lands, or at Arizona State Parks such as Deadhorse Ranch State Park in Cottonwood.
Bird-watching and photography: The Audubon Society recently identified habitat at the hatchery and surrounding riparian area along lower Oak Creek as an Important Bird Area. For detailed information, check out the Tucson Audubon website or the Northern Arizona Audubon website.
Fishing: While the hatchery is closed to angling, trout produced there are stocked in surrounding streams and rivers, including Oak Creek, Verde River, West Clear Creek, and Wet Beaver Creek. Generally, trout are stocked for anglers at many access points along each creek during fall, winter, and spring months when water temperatures are cool. To find out where or when a river or pond will be stocked, click on the stocking schedule or where to fish on the department’s Fishing Web page.
CAUTION: Temperatures vary from 15°F in December and January to over 95°F in June and July.
- The hatchery is closed to fishing.
Location: Page Springs Fish Hatchery is located on scenic Oak Creek five miles north of Cornville in Yavapai County. Bubbling Ponds Fish Hatchery is located less than ½ mile north. The hatcheries are a quick drive from either Cottonwood or Sedona. Surrounding lands are a mix of private and federal holdings. Page Springs Fish Hatchery is located within Game Management Unit 6A.
Directions: The hatchery is located on Page Springs Road just south of where it crosses Oak Creek. Page Springs Road is located west of I-17, between State Route 89 and Cornville Road.
The unique setting of Page Springs Hatchery provides habitat for a diversity of wildlife species.
Fish: Rainbow trout is the main fish species raised at the hatchery. A small number of brown trout are also produced. At Bubbling Ponds Hatchery, sportfish include largemouth bass, bluegill, and walleye. Native fish raised include Colorado pike minnow and razorback sucker.
Birds: Some common birds in the area are the black-crowned night-heron, great blue heron, belted kingfisher, and Clark’s grebe. Along the nature trail, numerous migratory species have been seen.
Invertebrates: The Page springsnail is found only at the Page Springs spring complex, from which several main springs and other minor springs arise. This snail typically occurs on firm substrates such as rocks, vegetation, floating algal mats and submerged woody debris, in association with slow to moderate flows of head springs, seeps and lateral spring runs.
Mammals: A few fish-eaters are known to stop by and try to sample trout. Skunks and raccoons have been seen at the hatchery. Employees rescued a skunk a few years ago when it attempted to swim in a raceway. In the surrounding uplands, mule and whitetail deer, elk, javelina, and black bear occur.
Management History, Objectives and Goals
The Page Springs property has been operated by the department primarily as an aquaculture facility since 1938. In the beginning, fish production was quite extensive in numerous ponds throughout the property. Since the 1960s, production has been consolidated in raceways. In 1993, Page Springs was renovated, making it a showcase facility, with state of the art raceways, a wonderful information center complete with fish tanks and interpretive signs, and a self guided tour path.
Management goals of the Page Springs Fish Hatchery property are to provide for the continued operation of fish culture activities, protect endemic invertebrates, and provide recreational opportunities.