Ranger’s Pick–Hibernating at Detroit Lake (2012)
Although it’s true the weather can be wet and chilly or snowy, campers come to Detroit Lake State Recreation Area in the winter for the quiet. They can tuck into their RVs and relax, play games or read. For those who don’t mind the rain, there is a lake bed to explore — one quite different from summer, says Park Ranger Jeannine White.
“It can be an adventure to hike around this most interesting landscape,” she adds. The Army Corps of Engineers lowers the water level behind Detroit Dam for flood control. The water is usually much lower in winter, revealing water channels, old stumps and snagged fishing gear. But, the water isn’t so low that you can’t fish. The lake is open to fishing year-round, and anglers with boats can launch at the low-water boat ramp at Mongold day-use area about 1½ miles from the campground. From Mongold, you can still see the foundations of the workers’ camp when the dam was built in the early 1950s.
The campground’s Loop F is first-come, first served Dec. 1 – March 14, 2013. The loop has 33 full hookup (sewer, electricity and water) RV sites. The ADA portion of the Loop F restroom and showers are open. You can buy firewood at the park.
Detroit Lake State Recreation Area (park info, map and driving directions)