For those who love the outdoors, it seems as though they have a keen sense of smell for the lesser-known areas around the country.
I've lived near Altus my whole life and I grew up visiting Tom Steed lake almost every weekend. Yet, I was completely surprised when my boyfriend took me to a river bend just north of Tom Steed. It was a small, dirt road that I would have never noticed, nor probably ever driven by, but it led to a beautiful Oklahoma Wildlife Management Area (WMA) which was perfect for a day of river boating.
This is a great day trip for those stationed at Altus Air Force Base. From the base, we drove east, headed towards Lawton and took the Snyder exit. We went through Snyder, past Mountain Park, and past the Great Plains Park sign that leads to Tom Steed. Just up the bend, around the lake, is where we found the small grassy turn-in.
After driving into the WMA, we quickly found a spot that was perfect for launching the boat.
**Disclaimer: When is say “boat”, I don't mean a speedboat or anything that requires a loading dock. I'm simply describing a small BassTracker fishing boat with a small, detachable motor. This was a gift Tyler had received many years ago and it was perfect for this little day trip. Anything bigger than that would not work well in this river.
I would also like to point out that the Walmart in Altus does not sell lifejackets out of season. Luckily, Atwoods keeps them stocked year-round. We did, however, find a super-cool collapsible oar at Walmart that was amazingly handy on the boat.
Retail price: $14.98
Out on the water the view was spectacular. What started out as a cool and cloudy day, quickly transformed into 60 degrees and sunny – perfect for river cruising!
We packed homemade avocado turkey wraps and goldfish for lunch, which went splendily with the day.
We cruised all the way down the river and back before we found a huge, open area back to the south. This spot would be very ideal for fishing in the warmer weather.
If you need a great excuse to enjoy warm weather and doing some trout fishing, this WMA near Tom Steed is a perfect reason to get going! See the map below for more details.
Total cost of this trip: FREE, plus a $14.98 collapsible oar for the boat