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Lake Information for Lake Oahe


Lake Oahe was created by the Oahe Dam, which was completed in 1958 and is one of the largest rolled-earth dams in the United States. Stretching from near Pierre, South Dakota, to just south of Bismarck, North Dakota, Lake Oahe is approximately 250 miles (402 kilometers) long. The name Oahe comes from the old Oahe Indian Mission that was established in 1874 a short distance from the present dam. The reservoir was constructed as part of the Missouri River Reclamation Project to provide flood control, hydroelectric power, irrigation, and recreation.

Lake Oahe is the 4th largest man-made reservoir in the United States.

Fishing Description: 

Rainbow smelt numbers have been increasing since 2002, but are not back to levels observed during the mid 1990’s.

Gizzard shad are found throughout Oahe and serve as an additional food source for many species of fish, including walleye and salmon.

When the water level increases on Lake Oahe, shoreline vegetation will be flooded increasing the productivity of the lake. Many species of fish will increase in abundance by using the newly flooded vegetation as spawning habitat, including northern pike and yellow perch.

Chinook Salmon
Smallmouth Bass
White Bass
Catfish Family
Optional Information
Maximum depth: 
Surface area: 
Lake Oahe
Lake type: 
South Dakota

Businesses Located Nearby

Boat Rental

    Lake Sharpe Marina
  • 502 Island Dr - Fort Pierre, SD
  • (605) 224-6612

Vacation Rental

Bar and Restaurant

    Possum Lodge
  • 1501 E Sioux Ave - Pierre, SD
  • (605) 224-0124
    Chateau Lounge
  • 110 N Deadwood St - Fort Pierre, SD
  • (605) 223-2402
    Minervas Restaurant & Bar
  • 801 E Highway 212 - Gettysburg, SD
  • (605) 226-2988

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