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About Our Site - Buffalo Bill State Park


The history of Buffalo Bill Reservoir and “Cody Country” is rooted in the rich lore of the old West. Buffalo Bill State Park was named for Colonel William F. “Buffalo Bill” Cody, famous as a wild west showman, promoter and developer. He first came to the region in the 1870s as a guide for a survey expedition and spent the next 20 years guiding and sponsoring hunting parties in the area.

“Buffalo Bill” Cody was influential in bringing irrigation and agricultural development into the area and founded the town in 1896 that bears his name. Some of the land now occupied by Buffalo Bill State Park was originally owned by Colonel Cody and was acquired from him by the federal government to implement the reservoir project.


Work began on the dam in 1905. When completed in 1910, it was the highest dam in the world at 325 feet. Buffalo Bill State Park was established in 1957 and provided recreational areas and facilities along the original shoreline. In 1993, an eight-year project was completed that raised the crest of the dam 25 feet and increased the reservoir storage capacity. The enlarged reservoir inundated the former recreation areas and required removal of the old park facilities. Buffalo Bill State Park has been redeveloped as part of that project.

Buffalo Bill State Park Hosts Great Dam Day, Aug. 18


 Buffalo Bill State Park, the Buffalo Bill Dam Visitor Center and Wild West Paddle Clubhosts this year’s annual Great Dam Day August 18, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.

The event will be held at the Buffalo Bill Dam Visitor Center located 6 miles west of Cody on HWY 14/16/20.

In addition to the events planned at the visitor center, there will be different interpretive learning stations located between the dam and Hayden Arch Bridge with kayak races in the river below.  The walk is two miles total from the visitor center to Hayden Arch bridge, but you don’t need to do all of that walking on your own as there will be vehicle assistance for folks needing help back up the steep grade.  Fat Racks BBQ and cold beverages will be available for purchase at the visitor center. 

Buffalo Bill Dam was completed in 1910 and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Buffalo Bill Dam was the tallest dam in the world upon completion. Construction began in 1904 and work was dangerous, difficult and tedious. The completed water storage supplies four irrigation districts encompassing over 93,000 acres of farmland. Youth and adults alike will find the views and history fascinating.

BB-great-dam-day-8-2011h-1Staff and volunteers will be on-site to answer questions and provide assistance. The event is open and free to the public.

For any questions, please contact the Buffalo Bill Dam Visitor Center General Manager Brad Constantine, at (307) 527-6076.


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Wyoming State Parks, Historic Sites & Trails
A Division of Wyoming State Parks & Cultural Resources
2301 Central Avenue, 4th Floor, Cheyenne, WY 82002





Site Status




May 1 - September 30:

Everything Open - Water and Showers weather dependent in May and September. Office hours 7am-7pm, Park open 24 hours a day to visitors; these hours vary as well due to seasonal employee personnel availability.

October - April: 

North Fork Campground Closed; Sheep Mountain Day Use Area Closed; Rest of park open to camping and day use, ALL water systems turned off for the winter season.




 Buffalo Bill State Park
 4192 Northfork Hwy
 Cody, WY 82414

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