Located less than 30 miles from Hartford, Lake McDonough is one of Connecticut's gems. Lake McDonough is a scenic, unspoiled public recreation area that offers numerous ways to enjoy the beauty of New England - every season of the year. With wheelchair accessibility to beaches, bathhouses, the boathouse and picnic areas - Lake McDonough is truly for everyone.
Swimming is allowed daily at East Beach and on weekends and holidays from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend. (West Beach and Goose Green Beach are currently closed to the public.)
East Beach is open weekdays from 10:00 AM - 8:00 PM and on weekends and holidays from 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM.
BEACH RULES AND REGULATIONS
Public safety is a high priority at Lake McDonough. Lifeguards are Red Cross certified, first aid is available, and the area is patrolled by uniformed MDC police.
To have a safe and enjoyable time, please abide by the following Beach Rules and Regulations:
Fishing by boat and from the shore is allowed from the third Saturday in April through Labor Day. Fishing from shore is also permitted through November 30. Shore fishing is allowed from sunrise to 9:00PM.
Each spring the MDC and Connecticut DEEP stock Lake McDonough with brown trout, rainbow trout and brook trout. A wheelchair accessible fishing pier is located at the south end of Lake McDonough on Route 219, approximately two miles from the intersection of Route 44 in New Hartford Center.
MDC rowboats are available for rent at the Lake McDonough Boathouse.
Private boat, canoe and kayak launching is also allowed for a fee. Motor boat speed is limited to 10 miles per hour.
Boat Launch Hours:
Weekdays: 10:00AM - Sunset
Weekends: 8:00AM - Sunset
FISHING AND BOATING RULES AND REGULATIONS
Picnic sites, with wheelchair accessible tables and a limited number of on-site grills are open from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend. Picnic tables and grills are available on a first come first served basis.
Dogs must be on a leash at all times; dogs are allowed in rowboats and in picnic areas, but not allowed on the beaches. Please clean up after your dog.
For beach and boathouse information call 860 379-3036 (in season) or 860 278-7850 ext. 3110. For group reservations, call 860 278-7850 ext. 3211.
The Lake McDonough recreation area is located on the west side of Route 219 in Barkhamsted, Connecticut, just over three miles northeast of the Route 44 intersection in New Hartford Center.
$6 a day per automobile (in state)
$15 a day per automobile (out of state)
$20 a day per van/bus with 8 to 45 passengers
$30 a day per van/bus with 45 or more passengers
Please be advised that if the number of passengers in any vehicle exceeds the maximum seat belt capacity, the vehicle may be denied access to the facility. If admitted, the vehicle will be charged the “van/bus” fee of $20 per day.
Parking Season Pass
$60 (weekdays only, for parking only – does not include boat launch)
Golden Eagle Parking Pass
Free for seniors 62 or older. (For parking only – does not include boat launch)
Personal Boat Launch Fee
$6 for power boats
$5 for non-power boats
$5 per hour for rowboats
Note: tickets good for one entry only. If you leave you must pay again to return.