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Bog vs. the residents of Lake Osakis

The massive bog has been damaging docks and other property on Lake Osakis for the past three years. (Contributed)

For the past three years, a bog that is more than two acres in size has been terrorizing the residents on Lake Osakis. The great bog has damaged docks and boats year after year, leaving the community in frustration.

Neighbors banded together in an effort to confine the monster to one location on the lake, only to have the high waters of spring jerk it loose and let it begin its rampage once again.

On June 11, the Osakis Lake Association (OLA) held a special meeting to discuss what could be done with the bog that has plagued the water for summers. It was decided that, as an incentive, OLA will match any cash donations up to $5,000 to help rid the lake of the bog once and for all.

“I want to stress that this is a one-time exception that was addressed because of its size,” said OLA President Gary Barber. “We are not going to remove every bog; the smaller ones are up to the property owners.”

Barber said that while this is typically not the responsibility of OLA, they feel it is a part of their mission to take care of their members. With this bog running free and damaging docks, boat sand property, Barber felt the problem had fallen within the lines of the OLA mission.

A contractor estimated the bog removal at around $10,000, but since no one locally had done this type of excavation before, the total was somewhat unknown.

The bog was temporarily moved to Outlet Bay on the east side of the lake, an effort made by 12 boats and pontoons, but since then had moved itself to Miller Bay. With a DNR access available in that location, the removal of the bog began on Friday, June 20.

With roughly $5,000 in donations, and the matched money from OLA, the project got under way. Didier Excavating began the process at 8 a.m. Friday, loading truck after truck with pieces of bog until midnight. They resumed at 7:30 a.m. the following day and worked into the afternoon. Barber said more than 150 truckloads of bog were dumped in a gravel pit by the north end of Little Osakis.

The majority of the bog has been removed, but money ran out. OLA is accepting donations to remove the remainder of the bog. Donations are tax deductible; write checks payable to Osakis Lake Association and send them to P.O. Box 102, Osakis, MN 56360, or deliver them to Linwood Resort.

Annie Harman
Annie Harman is a reporter for Echo Press and The Osakis Review. She grew up in Detroit Lakes and graduated from the University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire with a degree in print journalism and history in May 2012. Follow her on Twitter at annieharman
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