Lower Lake South

DNR Lake ID: 27013302

Location Highlights:
Lower Lake South is located north of Excelsior Bay and south of Echo Bay, Big Island separates this bay from its neighbor North Lower Lake. Deephaven, Greenwood, and Orono are the three cities that run the shoreline in the Minnetonka School District. Swift and Ferguson Point are popular areas in this bay and are easily recognized for their top-tier real estate. The bay contains Big Island Nature Park, the island has a rich history, starting as the Big Island Amusement Park in 1906. The 65-acre island drew in crowds of 10,000 persons per weekend. The park eventually closed down in 1911 and was bought by a collection of veteran organizations. They built various cabins on the ruins of the amusement park which created the Big Island Veterans Camp. The camp was used by veterans and their families for 80 years, providing an inexpensive vacation spot for the summer months. In 2003, the camp closed and was bought by the city of Orono. The city works with the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District to preserve the natural and physical composition of the island.

Water Quality:
The water depth in Lower Lake South ranges from 5 to 80 feet and has an A rating water quality by the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District. The bay is crystal clear and can be enjoyed recreationally all year round.  

Boating Restrictions:

Lake Access:
There are not any boat launches or marinas directly on Lower Lake South, but there are plenty of marinas just north in Echo Bay. Echo Bay is home to Caribbean Marina, Lindbo Landing Marina, and Tonka Bay Marina. These marinas offer easy access to Lake Minnetonka through their marine services, gas pumps, all-season boat storage, and dock slip rentals.

Lower Lake South’s convenient location gives boaters the option to alternate between the tourist downtown Excelsior and the natural Big Island Park. Downtown Excelsior is just minutes from Lower Lake South, in the summer events like Concerts in the Commons, Excelsior Farmer’s Market, and the annual Fourth of July celebration take place minutes from the water. Aside from the events downtown, Excelsior presents an abundance of shopping including local favorites, Primp, The Maker’s Studio, and Big Island Swim & Surf Company. Excelsior Public Docks make it easy to catch a great bite to eat at Lago Tacos, Tommy’s Tonka Trolley, Yumi’s, and Coalition. On the other end of the bay, boaters can enjoy the natural beauty of Big Island while anchoring boats on its sandy shores. Big Island is still a tourist attraction today, hosting the biggest Lake Minnetonka boat party on the Fourth of July.

Source City of Orono®  
Source MN DNR® 
Source Minnehaha Watershed District® 

Lower Lake South

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