East Okoboji Lake, Iowa, USA
Also known as: East Lake Okoboji
East Okoboji Lake is one of a chain of lakes known as Iowa’s Great Lakes. East Okoboji Lake received its unique name from the Dakota Indians. They called it “Okoboozhy”, which means “reeds”, because that is what the lake was surrounded by at one time. The clear blue waters of East Okoboji Lake are supplied by subterranean springs. Like the other Great Lakes in northwest Iowa, East…
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Welcome to the ultimate guide to East Okoboji Lake! Article topics include:
- All About East Okoboji Lake
- Where to Stay
- Vacation Planning Tools
- Things to Do
- Known Fish Species
- East Okoboji Lake Map
- Statistics / Weather / Helpful Links
- East Okoboji Lake Gifts
Looking for East Okoboji Lake cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore more of our favorite travel partners.
All About East Okoboji Lake, IA
East Okoboji Lake is one of a chain of lakes known as Iowa’s Great Lakes. East Okoboji Lake received its unique name from the Dakota Indians. They called it “Okoboozhy”, which means “reeds”, because that is what the lake was surrounded by at one time. The clear blue waters of East Okoboji Lake are supplied by subterranean springs. Like the other Great Lakes in northwest Iowa, East Okoboji Lake is the result of a melted glacier from the most recent ice age about 13,000 years ago. It is the third largest of Iowa’s Great Lakes with an area of 1,843 acres and a shoreline of almost 17 miles. East Okoboji is long and narrow with a maximum depth of 22 feet and an average depth of 10 feet. Quieter than its neighboring Great Lakes, its shallower waters do not attract large numbers of water sports enthusiasts.
Retirees and second home buyers choose East Okoboji for the beauty and privacy the lake offers. But there is so much more to the town of Okoboji than just East and West Okoboji Lakes, including seven area golf courses, local theaters and museums. A popular place for locals and visitors alike is the Jackson Speedway where exciting racing can be observed every Saturday night between May and August. Family fun and entertainment can be found at Arnold’s Park, an amusement park with rides, go carts, miniature golf, live concerts as well as a beach where you can participate in a variety of water sports.
Visitors choose East Okoboji for its remote location yet easy accessibility. It can be reached from one of the many surrounding towns, three of which are Orleans, Milford and Spencer. Iowa’s Great Lakes are located 15 miles from I-90 which runs along southern Minnesota near the Iowa border. If traveling on 1-90, it is worth the detour even if East Okoboji Lake isn’t your final destination. For visitors traveling longer distances, the nearest large airport is in Minneapolis-St. Paul.
Camping enthusiasts and hikers enjoy East Okoboji Lake. The most popular hiking trail is Spine Trail as it winds through several of the Great Lakes. Its pavement has made it popular among bikers, runners and hikers as it accommodates two-way traffic. Trail facilities include restrooms, picnic areas, information displays and kiosks, and resting or viewing benches to enhance your lake experience. This trail is ideal for winter visitors who use it for snowmobiling, skiing and other winter sports.
Many anglers choose East Okoboji over other of Iowa’s Great Lakes because of its stock of bullhead and bluegill. Anglers will also find walleye, white bass, yellow perch, crappies, catfish, and muskie. Anglers should be aware of the fishing regulations and restrictions at East Okoboji Lake. There is a daily bag limit of three walleye. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be released back into the lake alive. A limit of one walleye per day exceeding 22 inches is acceptable. Any muskie shorter than 40 inches must be returned to the lake alive. The fishing season is closed between December 1st and May 20th. There are no motor restrictions at East Okoboji Lake, so fishing can be done from your motor boat, or you may rent a motor boat from one of three boat rentals at East Okoboji Lake.
Come explore East Okoboji and the Iowa Great Lakes area. Between the forest and lake there are miles and miles of beauty to behold. Many visitors decide to make East Okoboji their permanent or second home. After your visit you may too.
Things to Do at East Okoboji Lake
These are some activities in the East Okoboji Lake, IA area visitors can enjoy:
- Amusement Park
- Miniature Golf
What Kind of Fish Are in East Okoboji Lake?
East Okoboji Lake has been known to have the following fish species:
- White Bass
- Yellow Perch
Find Places to Stay at East Okoboji Lake
If you’re considering a East Okoboji Lake lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.
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More Sites to Book a East Okoboji Lake Vacation
Our interactive East Okoboji Lake lodging map above is an easy tool for comparing VRBO rental homes and nearby hotels with Booking.com, but there could be times when you need to expand your search for different types of accommodations. Here are some other lake lodging partners we recommend:
East Okoboji Lake Statistics & Helpful Links
Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed
Water Level Control: Iowa Dept.of Natural Resources & US Army Corps of Engineers
Surface Area: 1,843 acres
Shoreline Length: 17 miles
Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 1,398 feet
Average Depth: 10 feet
Maximum Depth: 22 feet
Water Volume: 18,430 acre-feet
Drainage Area: 21 sq. miles
Trophic State: #ref!
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