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Star Lake is a 4,721-acre lake located in north-central Otter Tail County approximately four miles west of Dent, Minnesota. The lake's name was derived from its mostly circular shape with three arms stretching out resembling points of a star. The lake is very deep just off the eastern shores, reaching a maximum depth of 94 feet, but nearly 60 percent of the lake is 15 feet or less in depth. Known for its excellent fishing, Star Lake is a popular spot for anglers during both the open water and ice fishing seasons.
There are two state owned public access areas on the northern and eastern shores of Star Lake. Development around the lake is scattered with a number of private residences, cabins and resorts. Campgrounds are located all around the lake and within the many sheltered bays. Finding the perfect camping site or vacation rental shouldn't be a problem. Sandy beaches can be found on the southern shore of the main body of Star Lake.
Although a beautiful recreational lake with picnic facilities and swimming areas, most people visit Star Lake to fish. The lake has a reputation as one of the best all-around fishing lakes in Otter Tail County. Northern pike, largemouth bass, walleye, bullhead, crappie, rock bass, perch, and bluegill are the dominant game fish species in the lake. Northern pike range in length from 12.6 to 31.8 inches with an average length and weight of 19.4 inches and 1.6 pounds. Walleye range in length from 6.7 to 25.9 inches with an average length and weight of 14.9 inches and 1.3 pounds. Bluegill over 7 inches are not uncommon. Anglers are encouraged to practice selective harvest and release the bigger fish back into the water. Selective harvest ensures that the lake has enough spawning age fish to provide anglers with more opportunities to catch large fish in the future.
Most fish are safe to eat, but any fish (store-bought or sport-caught) could contain contaminants such as mercury that can harm your health. When eating fish from Star Lake, anglers should follow the Minnesota Department of Health Safe Eating Guidelines (see the link at the bottom of the page).
Otter Tail County is home to 1,048 lakes and numerous small country towns. While visiting Star Lake, consider a visit to neighboring 7,534-acre Dead Lake also well known or its fine fishing. You can also travel the Otter Tail Scenic Byway which meanders for 150 miles and guides travelers through scenic forests, past shimmering lakes and ponds and through fascinating towns alive with culture and history. The trip makes a terrific day-trip.
West of Star Lake is Maplewood State Park, with over 9,250 acres of woods, eight major lakes and several ponds. This state-protected habitat is great for hiking, bird watching, biking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, swimming, and fishing. It is also a great place to relax and enjoy nature. Maplewood is famous for its heavily-forested terrain and abundant wildlife. Facilities in the park include a campground with electrical hookups, a swimming beach, boat ramps, numerous picnic spots, and hike-in camping areas.
For those who enjoy natural beauty and good fishing, Star Lake is an angler's paradise. And with no shortage of great lodging options, from tent camping to modern lakeside cabins, the lake can provide the perfect getaway you've been waiting for.
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