San Carlos Apache
Recreation & Wildlife Department
Established with the mission "To preserve, protect and
enhance wildlife populations on the San Carlos, for the
benefit of the Tribe and for benefit of the ecosystem". The
Recreation and Wild Department plays an important role in
maintaining our lands and resources.
watching and wildlife photography activities along with
Hunting and Fishing guide information is available from the
website or by contacting the department directly at:
928-475-2361. Elk tags for trophy elk hunts staged on the
San Carlos Apache Reservation generates benefiting revenues
for the Tribe’s Conservation Fund which is used for wildlife
survey, research and habitat improvement projects.
The San Carlos Apache Tribe’s Wildlife and Recreation Department manages
its Dry Lake and Hilltop trophy elk herds which have
produced some of the largest antler bearing elk in the
world. The Department manages big game hunting by managing
hunter densities and limiting permit sales. Past years the
trophy elk tags are limited to three per hunt.
The 1.86 million acres lying within portions of Gila, Graham and Pinal
Counties, are remaining lands of the original San Carlos
Apache Reservation established by executive order in 1871.
Successful returning of territorial and habitat lands
remains a contemporary goal. San Carlos is the largest
Apache reservation and encompasses seven biotic regions
ranging from desert to forest. Its wildlife resources
include Rocky Mountain Elk, Coues-White Tailed Deer, Rocky
Mountain Big Horn Sheep, Desert Big Horn Sheep, Javelina,
Pronghorn Antelope, Black Bear, Mountain Lion, Wild Turkey,
predators and small game. These animal species are managed
by expert field professionals of Apache decent. Combining
today's modern advancements with inherent knowledge of our
lands created effective management programs.
San Carlos is an excellent fishery destination that include both cold
water and warm water fisheries. When full, San Carlos Lake
is the largest lake in Arizona with 158 miles of shoreline.
It contains state record holding Largemouth Bass, Black
Crappie and Flathead Catfish. Talkalai Lake fed by sacred
spring waters is home to monster largemouth bass, catfish,
crappie, bluegill and sunfish. Picnic tables surround the
Southern and Northern shore lines equipped permanent charcoal grills for
that catch of the day. The spring shad runs are a stable
food source for many birds and wildlife living along the San
Carlos river and waterways.
In addition to hunting and fishing, the San Carlos Apache Reservation
offers a variety of year-round recreational and cultural
opportunities for visitors. The San Carlos
Apache Cultural Center is located in Peridot on U.S. 70
and features a display named “Window on Apache Culture” that
shares information about the San Carlos Apache life and
history. The Center also offers educational programs and
demonstrations as well as special, traditional sunrise
ceremonial visits for pre-arranged groups.
Sportsmen interested in applying for one of the trophy elk tags or
wanting information about the other hunting and fishing
opportunities available and permit requirements on the San
Carlos Apache Reservation should contact the Wildlife &
Recreation Department at 928-475-2343 or 888-475-2344. The
department’s fax number is 928-475-2701, our address is P.O.
Box 97, San Carlos, Arizona 85550 or check our
undergoing reconstruction for updates, special events and
additional information about the other recreational
opportunities offered by the San Carlos Apache Tribe can
call the Administration Offices at (928) 475-2361