OTSEGO STATE PARK
Otsego Lake State Park is a charming and popular family park easily accessible to I-75 and Gaylord, "The Alpine Village." The park is shaded with large oak, maple and pine. The park encompasses 62 acres and provides more than a half mile of sandy beach and large sites near or within sight of the lake.
Otsego Lake was established as a State Park in 1920. The property was purchased very reasonably from a lumber company who had lumbered it off. In 1935, the Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) built buildings and made other improvements to the grounds. The remaining CCC buildings are the pavilion in the center of the North Campground, a portion of the park store, and a portion of the South campground toilet building.
Camping and Day Use
Two-thirds of the 20 campsites are in the North Campground which is known as the "highbanks." The terrain gently rises and the sites overlook the lake. The other one-third are in the South campground and are lower and closer to the lake. The majority of the sites are large, flat and shady. There are two playgrounds in the park; at north Point and in the day use area, which includes volleyball and horseshoe courts. A park store, boat rental, boat launch, picnic area, picnic shelter, restrooms, and a long snady beach with safe swimming, complete our day use areas.
There is one mini-cabin located on the lake in the South Campground, equipped with a picnic table, stove, handicap ramp, small deck, campfire circle, two sets of bunk beds, and a table with benches for four people.
There are no designated hiking trails. However, there are paths in the wooded part of the picnic area where you can pick blueberries, or observe a rare and protected wild orchid, the Lady's slipper. A Junior Forester Award is available for those who wish to walk throughout the park and locate 20 species of trees.
Boating and Fishing
In the day use area, there is a concrete pad boat launch and parking for 19 boat trailers. Also, there is a concession that rents boats, with or without motors, canoes, paddle boats, and a pontoon boat. Fishing is generally good year-round. Species inlcude bluegill, perch, crappie, largemouth and smallmouth bass, walleye, northern pike, and sturgeon.
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