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East Okoboji Lake

General Information

County: Dickinson
Location: east edge of Okoboji
Acres: 1835.00
Maximum Depth: 22 ft. (1970)
Motoring Restrictions: none

Amenities

Amenities at East Okoboji Lake include:
  • Boat Access
  • Fishing Jetty
  • Accessible Pier
  • Boat Rental
  • Picnic Area
  • Beach
  • Trails
  • Accessible Facilities
  • Playground
  • Restrooms
  • Camping
  • Hard Surface Boat Ramp

Fishing Report

No fishing activity reported in the Spirit Lake District. Most lakes are ice covered;however, ice conditions are poor with 2 inches or less measured on area lakes.
No fishing activity. Very large open area is present on the south end of the lake.

Fishing Forecast

Spring 2012 Gil Netting Season – Gill nets are set each spring to collect broodstock walleye, muskie and northern pike for the Spirit Lake hatchery operation. All fish are counted during the netting operation to assess the overall fish populations of East Okoboji Lake. The lack of winter weather and record high temperatures helped make March 2012 the warmest on record in Iowa. This unseasonable weather pattern resulted in early ice out and higher than normal water temperatures, which may have contributed to the untypical 2012 gill net season; therefore, comparing this season’s catch to historical gill net values may be problematic. Walleyes were again detected in good numbers during the 2012 gill net season. A walleye catch rate of 37 fish per crew night decreased from the 2011 catch rate of 49 fish per crew night, however; catch rates remained high with this sample the fourth highest recorded since 1937 (53 fish per net), indicating excellent numbers of this species in East Okoboji Lake. Muskie catch rates also remained high during the 2012 gill net season. A muskie catch rate of 11 fish per crew night declined (14 fish per crew night, 2011 gill net season); however, catch rates were the sixth highest recorded since brood stock muskies were first sampled in 1965, indicating the continued presence of good numbers of muskie in East Okoboji Lake. A northern pike catch rate of 7 fish per crew night declined (11fish per crew night; 2011 spring gill net season) during the 2012 gill net season; however catch rates remained significantly greater than the lakes median value of 3 fish per crew night, (1 – 5 fish per crew night, lower and upper percentiles) indicating good numbers of northern pike in the catch. Largemouth and smallmouth bass continue to be detected in limited numbers in the brood stock catch in East Okoboji Lake. Catch rates have typically remained low and the 2012 spring gill netting season was no exception. Historically, low numbers of bass have been sampled by gill nets in East Okoboji Lake. White bass were again detected in superb numbers during the 2012 gill net season. A white bass catch rate of 18 fish per crew night decreased (193 fish per crew night, 2011 gill net season); with catch rates higher but comparable to the lakes median value of 3 fish per crew night (1 – 18, lower and upper percentiles). This population has no doubt expanded since 1991 and has continued on an up-cycle in East Okoboji Lake. Channel catfish were detected in high numbers for the third consecutive year and is the second highest catch rate recorded since brood stock collection began in 1936. A channel catfish catch of 26 fish per crew night remained fairly stable (23 fish per night, 2011 gill net catch); with catch rates remaining significantly higher than the lakes median value for the eight consecutive year, reflecting a continued expanded population in East Okoboji Lake. A bullhead catch rate of 6 fish per crew night remained relatively unchanged for the third consecutive year. A bullhead catch rate of 6 fish per crew night remained unchanged during the 2012 gill net season, (6 and 7 fish per crew night; 2011 and 2010 spring gill net season) and remained comparable to the lakes median value of 5 fish per night (2 – 12; lower and upper percentiles). Catch rates the past three years suggests a fairly stable bullhead population in East Okoboji Lake. Rough fish comprised of carp, buffalo, freshwater drum and suckers were detected in varying densities during the 2012 gill net season, indicating the continued presence of these species in East Okoboji Lake. Carp catch rates returned to normalcy during the 2012 gill net season. A carp catch rate of 7 fish per crew night (10 fish per crew night; 2011 gill net season) was comparable to the lakes median value of 5 fish per night. Carp catch rates during the 2012 gill net season were no doubt influenced by low water and the lack of flow of the spillway. Freshwater drum, buffalo and suckers were also detected during the 2012 gill net season. YOUNG OF THE YEAR ASSESSMENT: No young of the year walleye, for the second consecutive year were detected during the 2012 500’ bag seine assessment, suggesting very limited or no success of the springtime fry stocking in East Okoboji Lake. Young of the year bluegill were detected in higher but comparable numbers during the East Okoboji Lake 500 foot drag seine assessment. A bluegill catch rate of 1,431 fish per haul was approximately two times higher than the lakes median value (754 fish per haul); however catch rates were comparable (187 – 2,091 lower and upper percentiles) suggesting good spawning success. Young of the year largemouth bass were detected in the catch in typical numbers during the East Okoboji Lake 500 foot drag seine assessment. A catch rate of 6 YOY largemouth bass per haul was higher but comparable to the lakes median value (0 – 6, lower and upper percentiles) suggesting spawning success of the largemouth bass population of East Okoboji Lake. White bass catch rates returned to a more typical catch during the 2012 East Okoboji bag seine assessment. A catch rate of 7white bass per haul was two times higher than the lakes median value of 3 fish per haul; with, catch rates comparable to typical catch rates ( 0 – 20 lower and upper percentiles) indicating good spawning success of the white bass population of East Okoboji Lake. Yellow bass continued to be sampled during the 2012 drag seine assessment. A total of 65 young of the year yellow bass were sampled, suggesting spawning success of this species in East Okoboji Lake. Young of the year crappie catch increased during the 2012 East Okoboji Lake 500 foot drag seine assessment. A catch rate of 112 fish per haul increased (30 fish per haul; 2011 500 foot drag seine assessment) and is comparable to the lakes median value of 104 fish per haul; (38 – 208 fish per haul; lower and upper percentile values) suggesting good spawning success.. Young of the year yellow perch catch rates declined during the 2012 East Okoboji Lake 500 drag seine assessment. A yellow perch catch rate of 10 fish per haul (35 fish per haul, 2011 500 foot bag seine assessment) was comparable to the lakes median value of 28 fish per haul, (7 – 88 lower and upper percentiles) indicating typical spawning success of this species in East Okoboji Lake. Spottail shiners were detected in comparable numbers during the 2012 drag seine assessment. A catch rate of 45 spottail shiners per haul was similar to the lakes median value (32 fish per haul; 4 – 138, lower and upper percentiles). This catch rate suggests typical numbers exists in East Okoboji Lake. Subadult catch rates of bluegill were detected in significantly greater numbers, indicating strong year classes, which will recruit and provide an upswing to the fishery in the next few years. Yellow perch, crappie and white bass were detected in varying degrees; however, catch rates remained comparable to their respective norms suggesting year class formation of these species in East Okoboji Lake. (2012)


Lake Maps

Download Printable Lake Map

You can zoom in on the map for bathymetric information for some lakes

Popular Fish Species at this Lake

Fish Stocking

  • 10/21/2013 - 8,449 Walleye (8.0")
  • 05/17/2013 - 3,000,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 05/17/2013 - 6,500,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/15/2012 - 7,902 Walleye (8.7")
  • 09/17/2012 - 1,262 Walleye (7.3")
  • 08/16/2012 - 6,987 Walleye (6.4")
  • 08/16/2012 - 6,987 Walleye (6.5")
  • 04/25/2012 - 3,378,212 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/12/2011 - 9,177 Walleye (8.3")
  • 05/11/2011 - 6,556,545 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/21/2010 - 9,178 Walleye (9.6")
  • 09/20/2010 - 4,400 Channel Catfish (9.5")
  • 04/26/2010 - 11,058,923 Walleye (Fry)
  • 09/28/2009 - 9,289 Walleye (6.7")
  • 05/06/2009 - 6,520,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 04/09/2009 - 100,320 Northern Pike (Fry)
  • 05/11/2008 - 6,600,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 05/03/2007 - 6,450,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 09/18/2006 - 5,610 Channel Catfish (6.8")
  • 04/27/2006 - 6,500,000 Walleye (Fry)
  • 10/11/2005 - 4,660 Channel Catfish (7")
  • 04/24/2005 - 6,501,938 Walleye (Fry)
  • 09/20/2004 - 7,000 Channel Catfish (7")
  • 04/23/2004 - 6,500,000 Walleye (Fry)

Regulations

The Fishing Regulations brochure is available for download. The summaries listed below are a partial listing provided for your benefit.

  • Black Bullhead
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: unlimited
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Black Crappie
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined black and white crappie, 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • Bluegill
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: No daily limit on private waters
  • Channel Catfish
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 8 fish
    • Possession Limit: combined: channel, blue and flathead catfish, 30 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Except for border lakes
  • Northern Pike
    • Season: Continuous, except for boundary lakes
    • Daily Bag Limit: 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: 6 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other: Except for border lakes
  • Walleye
    • Season: Open from May 3, 2014 through February 15, 2015.
    • Daily Bag Limit: 3 fish
    • Possession Limit: 6 fish
    • Length Limit: all 17 to 22-inch walleyes must be immediately released alive
    • Other: No more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day
  • White Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Yellow Bass
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: none
    • Possession Limit: unlimited
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:
  • Yellow Perch
    • Season: Continuous
    • Daily Bag Limit: 25 fish
    • Possession Limit: 50 fish
    • Length Limit: none
    • Other:

Fish Surveys

Lake Fish Survey Data Data from the most recent fisheries survey of this lake is provided on this external web site. This data may include information from various netting surveys and/or electroshocking surveys. Data includes numbers of fish sampled, and fish size ranges. Not all lakes are sampled every year.

Lake Mini-report

Lake Reports Summary report information about selected (~130) lakes regarding water quality, upstream land use, usage, economic value and more. Reports are customizable by the user to include only that information which the user desires to include.

Water Quality

Iowa-Caught Fish Are Safe to Eat, In Almost All Cases

The vast majority of Iowa’s streams, rivers and lakes offer safe and high-quality fish that pose little or no threat to human health if consumed. Some limitations may apply for young children and pregnant women. Here’s a Fish Consumption Fact Sheet from the Iowa DNR and the Iowa Dept. of Public Health for more information. Here is a list of current fish consumption advisories for Iowa lakes and rivers.

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