Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.



You don't need to share your secrets, but share your lake

Contribute to, read and share our "This is My Lake" series this summer.


FARGO -- As open-water fishing and recreation continues to throttle toward its summer peak, Northland Outdoors wants you to share aspects of your lake with other readers.

You certainly don't have to divulge your favorite 4 p.m. fishing location or the bait you use. We're just looking for a personal touch, such as why this is your favorite lake, the activities most popular at this lake and other characteristics. Of course, send us a photo of your lake as well.

You don't even have to be an angler to participate; we'll welcome anyone who just enjoys the lake life and their recreational values.

Submissions will be accepted throughout the spring and summer months. We will share your entries throughout the course of the summer season.
For those of you on the move, you can always submit more lakes you enjoy.


A view of Patterson Lake in western North Dakota. Submitted photo

Patterson Lake

Stark County, N.D.

Lake features: Lake is 3 miles west of Dickinson. Boating, fishing, swimming, camping, picnic, walking, playground, disc golf, waterskiing. My favorite thing is the different wildlife I see while floating along. We have seen cormorants, grebes, eagles, coots, pelicans, swifts, herons, blackbirds, seagulls, deer foxes, turtles and more.

Activities: Fishing boats and a few pontoons. Some waterskis and a few jet skis and canoes. A nice size beach for playing. Equipped with bathrooms, picnic area and walking trails.

Why is this lake your favorite? This lake is tiny, only 26 miles of shoreline and not much of that is beachworthy. But because of its size there are hardly any boats on this lake, especially loud ones. We enjoy the quiet and slowness of this lake. The wildlife is amazing from the boat and the smallness keeps it quiet and wildlife friendly.

Favorite local hangout at this lake: Right in the middle.

-- Lynn Dirk, Dickinson, N.D.


Lake Oahe
A view of Lake Oahe in central North Dakota. Submitted photo

Lake Oahe

Burleigh County, N.D.

Lake features: Very fine walleye fishery with numerous sandbars that double as beaches in summer.

Activities: Fishing, kayaking, canoeing, personal watercraft, beach activity.

What species of fish are most common on this lake? Walleye, northern, catfish, white bass, smallmouth bass

Why is this lake your favorite? Lake Oahe and the river are the recreational centerpieces of summer recreation in the area

Favorite local hangout at this lake: My house

-- Jeff Weispfenning, Bismarck


Island Lake.jpg
Ali Juten and her family enjoy spending time at Island Lake. Special to Forum News Service

Island Lake

St. Louis County, Minn.

Lake features: Like its name suggests, it is full of islands to camp on or stop at on your boat. It is a popular lake to spend time on in the summer for water-related activities like tubing, wakeboarding, skiing, pontooning and fishing. Boats gather each weekend at the rope swing to swing into the water and socialize.

Activities: Fishing, pontooning, tubing, and social gatherings at the rope swing.

What species of fish are most common on this lake? Northern pike, walleye, crappie


Why is this lake your favorite? I've had a family cabin here most of my life and it holds many memories for me.

Favorite local hangout at this lake: Island Lake Inn

-- Ali Juten, Duluth

Kitchi Lake

Cass County, Minn.

Lake features: Scenery, fish variety

Activities: Most of the activity seen on this lake during the time that I fish it are fishing and some recreation depending upon weather. The lake is in northern Minnesota and is home to many northern resorts!


What species of fish are most common on this lake? Walleye, bluegills, crappies, and pike - we’ve pretty much caught it all on this lake but mainly target walleyes and panfish.

Why is this lake your favorite? I’ve been going to this lake since I can remember. It’s a family tradition and it holds a special place in my heart. I grew up fishing and camping on Kitchi lake over Memorial Day weekend and now I get to bring my kiddos to enjoy one of my favorite family traditions of the year! It’s very meaningful and they enjoy it as much as I do!

Favorite local hangout at this lake:The Pike Hole Bar and Grill.

-- Nicole Elfmann, Annandale, Minn.

Lake Lizzie.jpeg
A view of Lake Lizzie near the heart of northwestern Minnesota's lake country. Pelican Rapids is about 7 miles away. Submitted photo

Lake Lizzie

Otter Tail County, Minn.

Lake features: Lake is only a 50-minute drive from Fargo-Moorhead. It’s also near Pelican Rapids (7 miles) and Detroit Lakes (16 miles). One of my favorite things is the Rush end of Lake Lizzie where it’s like a wildlife refuge and connects to Crystal Lake. Very peaceful. There’s also a sandbar that many people enjoy relaxing, hanging out listening to music/playing frisbee and having a cold one. It’s a good size lake with two islands, a camping resort and a mixture of seasonal cabins along with beautiful year-round homes as well.


Activities: Boating, water skiing and tubing, lots of pontoons and a few jet skis.

What species of fish are most common on this lake? Sunfish, bass and walleye.

Why is this lake your favorite? We enjoy having family and friends and making memories. We’ve been going there for many decades so it’s very special to us as well as our family.

Favorite local hangout at this lake: Right off our dock either floating around or paddleboarding.

-- Mary Gnahn, Fargo

20210701_110624 - Terry Dimmer.jpg
A view of Lake 7 in Ottertail County, Minn. Submitted photo

Lake 7

Ottertail County, Minn.

Lake features: A very clear and clean lake. Nice sandy shores

Activities: Swimming, fishing and skiing, also kayaking and canoeing

What species of fish are most common on this lake? Sunfish, bass and walleye

Why is this lake your favorite? My family has had five generations on this lake.

Favorite local hangout at this lake: The beach

-- Terry Dimmer, Fargo

Sign up for the Northland Outdoors newseletter

What To Read Next
Get Local