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Photo of City Lake

Due to the need to increase the city’s water supply, a new dam for the Lawson Reservoir was completed in 1964 which expanded the previous 7-acre lake to 25-acres. The Lawson City Lake complex is a total of 111-acres at the north side of Lawson, Missouri in Ray County. In recent years, the City has added many amenities to the complex making it a great destination for picnicking, nature viewing, bird watching, hiking, and fishing.

A 1.7 mile trail goes around the Lake with several benches, as well as, some exercise stations that were put in by the Rotary Club of Lawson.

For fishing enthusiasts, bass, crappie, catfish and carp are in the lake. Channel catfish are stocked periodically by the Conservation Department.

An 18-hole disc golf course covers much of the land around the Lake. During the warmer months, visitors can borrow life jackets (no swimming) from the loaner station, also provided by the Rotary Club. 

The newest additions to the complex include the Lakeview Event Center and the Lakeview Campground and RV Park. Operating more or less under same rules at Missouri State Parks with similar amenities. The RV Park will be operated under the direction of the Parks and Recreation Department.

Photo of people fishing at Lawson Lake



Rules and Regulations
Camping, fishing, launching and landing non-motorized boats are permitted at any time when authorized. State fishing permit is required.
• Only pole and line fishing (3 per person).
• Seining or trapping live bait is prohibited.
• Bullfrogs and green frogs may be taken during the statewide season by hand, handnet, gig, longbow, and hook and line.
• Hunting or shooting, swimming, digging, fireworks and unattended fires are not allowed.
• Horseback riding not permitted.
• Vehicles on roadways and parking areas only.
• ATVs prohibited.
• Electric boat motors only.
Click here for complete City Lake Regulations.


Things to Do
• Fishing
• Frogging
• RV Camping
• Camping 
• Hiking/Trail
• Picnicking
• Outdoor Photography
• Nature Study and Birdwatching
• Boating (electric motors only)
• Kayaking

Map below by Missouri Department of Conservation

Missouri Department of Conservation Map of Lawson Lake

The Raum Bridge is CLOSED until replacement in 2024. No foot traffic, vehicle, bikes, UTVs, golf carts, etc are allowed on the bridge. The Lawson Lake complex can be accessed from gravel roads (204th and Tri-County Line Road to Raum) coming from the west or a paved route via KK Hwy to 208th Street to Raum from the east.

Photo Lawson City Lake
Photo Lawson City Lake Restrooms
Photo Lawson City Lake Shelter House