70 miles NW of Kingman; 256 miles NW of Phoenix; 30 miles SE of Las Vegas, NV
Lake Mead National Recreation Area, which includes Lake Mead, Lake Mohave, and a scenic, free-flowing stretch of the Colorado River, straddles the border between Arizona and Nevada and is a vast watersports playground. Throughout the year, anglers fish for striped bass, rainbow trout, channel catfish, and other sport fish, while during the hot summer months, Lake Mead and Lake Mohave attract tens of thousands of water-skiers and personal watercraft riders. Due to its proximity to Las Vegas and the fact that there are more facilities on the Nevada side of Lake Mead, the recreation area tends to be more popular with Nevadans than with Arizonans.
Lake Mead, the larger of the two reservoirs, was created by Hoover Dam, which was built between 1931 and 1935 and was the first major dam on the Colorado River. By supplying huge amounts of electricity and water to Arizona and California, it set the stage for the phenomenal growth the region experienced in the latter half of the 20th century. Today, with water levels in Lake Mead at all-time lows, the cities that depend on the lake's water have finally begun to address the issue of water conservation. Rest assured, though, that there is still plenty of water left in the lakes to float your boat.