April 24, 2019

Boat Permits Now Available for Maffitt Reservoir

Canoe, kayak and paddleboard enthusiasts are invited to enjoy the beautiful water and views at Maffitt Reservoir and Park. Interested users must purchase an annual permit to launch their watercraft at Maffitt Reservoir. No motors or sails of any kind are allowed, which helps ensure the lake remains a high quality water source for central Iowa’s drinking water supply. The annual boat permit can be purchased for $20.00 (cash, check or credit card) at Des Moines Water Works’ General Office, located at 2201 George Flagg Parkway, in Des Moines.

Dale Maffitt Reservoir is a 200-acre lake that sits among the tall oaks overlooking Des Moines Water Works’ L.D. McMullen Water Treatment Plant. The lake, primarily located in Polk County, also has corners that reach into Warren, Dallas and Madison Counties. The reservoir was constructed in the early 1940s, as a backup water source and named in honor of then General Manager of Des Moines Water Works, Dale Maffitt. In 2000, Des Moines Water Works began operating the L.D. McMullen Water Treatment Plant at Maffitt Reservoir, producing up to 25 million gallons per day for Des Moines and surrounding areas. For decades, nature lovers and anglers have enjoyed the serenity of the lake, as ducks, geese, river otter and a multitude of fish species call it home.

Park hours are 7:00 am-8:00 pm (Standard Time) and 6:00 am-9:00 pm (Daylight Savings Time). Take Army Post Road west, across Interstate 35 and follow the signs.

For more information on the use of canoes, kayaks and paddleboards at Maffitt Reservoir and other Park Rules, please contact Des Moines Water Works at (515) 283-8700 or visit www.dmww.com/parks-events/maffitt-reservoir.

Posted by: Laura Sarcone 5 Comments
Labels: , , , Posted in Maffitt Reservoir, Parks

5 Responses to “Boat Permits Now Available for Maffitt Reservoir”

  1. July 01, 2020 at 7:12 am, John said:

    Site says no one under 18 unless someone over 18 is on board? What about single seater kayaks if we are on the water as a family and have a permit for each boat.


  2. July 01, 2020 at 12:36 pm, David Bayless said:

    Can You pay the $20 by check or by credit card and can You fill out a form online and pay online ? Thanks, have enjoyed the lake for years with my Wife and Dog, driving or hiking enjoying Nature and Wildlife…


    • August 24, 2020 at 2:04 pm, Laura Sarcone said:

      Hello, We are so happy you are enjoying Maffitt Reservoir. You will need to come into the General Office at 2201 George Flagg Parkway, Monday-Friday 7:30am-5:00 pm to fill out the form and receive the permit sticker on-site.


  3. May 07, 2021 at 3:46 pm, Jay said:

    With the office closed, how do I get a permit for my kayak? Thank you


    • May 10, 2021 at 6:56 am, Laura Sarcone said:

      While Des Moines Water Works’ General Office is currently closed to the public, please call (515) 283-8752 for Maffitt Reservoir boat permits.


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