Nestled in the northwest corner of Iowa, the Iowa Great Lakes include Iowa’s largest natural lake, Spirit Lake, and five interconnected lakes: West Lake Okoboji, East Lake Okoboji, Upper Gar, Lower Gar, and Minnewashta. These beautiful lakes are the result of a geological drama that occurred over 14,000 years ago – when the Des Moines Ice Lobe of the Late Wisconsin Glaciation period retreated southward across the upper Midwest. The result was a phenomenon that sculpted the earth with unimaginable power and beauty, fashioning the landscape now known as the Iowa Great Lakes.
The chain of six natural lakes, covering more than 12,000 acres with nearly 70 miles of shoreline, is a noted fishery for such game fish species as walleye, northern pike muskellunge, largemouth and smallmouth bass, perch, crappie, and bluegill. Big Spirit Lake is the largest natural lake in Iowa at 5,684 acres. West Lake Okoboji is one of only three blue water lakes in the world, spring fed and 136 feet deep. Water recreational opportunities, from boating to sailing to various water sports, are boundless.