Otisco Lake

blog image

2045 Otisco Valley Road
Marietta, NY 13110

About Otisco Lake

It is the seventh largest of Finger Lakes and is located in the Hudson Valley in upstate New York, north of Rochester, New Jersey.

The tranquil landscape of the area consists of wooded hills of Finger Lakes. The Iroquois call the lake "Otisco," which means "where the water dries out." It is fed by a northern outlet that feeds Onondaga Lake from Nine Mile Creek, and it flows into Lake Erie, the largest lake in New York State and the second largest in the United States.

The dam was rebuilt in 1908 and is owned by the Onondaga County Water Board. It was built to raise the water level by five meters and create a reservoir for the Erie Canal. The water levels of the lake fluctuated and dried up over the years, leading to largely unusable marshland. At the beginning of the 20th century, the water level was raised by four meters to provide drinking water to the Onondaga region, but the dam has since been rebuilt and raised by another five meters.

At the southern end of the lake, Lake Otisco is divided into two basins by a rocky basin. The dam was built to carry a road that can be used by wagons to cross the lake instead of crossing it, but the road is no longer used.

Although not maintained as a public facility, the dam offers a beautiful view of the lake and is a popular fishing spot. A dam break on the west bank allows boats to sail between the upper and lower part of the lake. Despite the small size of Lake Otisco, its natural beauty and its proximity to Syracuse, it is a sought-after place to live. The small southern basin is rather flat and extremely cloudy, as is the larger northern basin with its rocky coastline.

In contrast to most smaller Finger Lakes, Otisco Lake has little wind and is more suitable for motorboat and sailboat rides. Public access to the lake is severely restricted, but fishing is allowed, and the coast available to anglers will come first - come first, served first. Today, the New York State Department of Environmental Protection (NYS DEC) has 550 plots along the lake shore.

Although limited, access to Lake Otisco is not impossible, and the lake is extremely popular in the summer months. The annual fishing derby, sponsored by the Otisco Rod and Gun Club, usually takes place in the second week of June and fills the lake with boats. After Memorial Day, the lake experienced a huge increase in population, but is still very open to the public.

The Otisco Lake County Park was inaugurated on July 12, 2000 and the land belonging to the Hirsch family was to be sold and used as a park. It contains a gift from Onondaga County and has towering evergreen plants as well as an old - growing forest of trees and shrubs.

It is open all year round - from sunrise to sunset and parking is limited to five cars, pets and swimming are not allowed. There is a toilet at the handboat launch and there is also a picnic area with picnic tables, picnic benches and a water park.

The Otisco Lake Causeway has parking for up to eight cars and the park is located on the west side of the lake at the intersection of Otisco Lake Road and New York State Route 1.

The western side of the dam offers a unique opportunity to see the lake from the surface, and parking is limited to ten cars. There is a small jetty and small, popular launch sites for handguns, a parking lot for up to four cars and a picnic area. Otisco Lake State Park, the largest public park in upstate New York, is open year-round - from sunrise to sunset, and offers hand-drawn boat rides.

If you are a fisherman, Lake Otisco has a lot to offer, from fishing to boat trips, kayaking and even a fishing pier. The marina on Lake Otisco also has a boat ramp located on the west side of the lake, next to the main entrance to the park, and has a parking space for up to four cars.

Perches are often caught up to 20 inches, but also large-mouth and small-mouth-perches occur frequently in the water. This is the northern end of the last period, which is known for its stocking year, and is stocked all year round and often large perches (20 + inches) are caught.

The best time to fish is in the spring, early summer and autumn months, but throwing from the shore or dam at dusk is best for wallets.

Lake Otisco could be one of the state's best fish waters, and trout fishing is available in spring. Carp are also found throughout the lake, mostly in shallow areas, but in spring and autumn you can catch brown trout and brown trout while trolling. Tiger Mousky were caught and are a nice trophy for the experienced angler, as well as for a few other fish species.

The north end usually freezes in winter and offers good ice fishing opportunities, but the lake is currently behaving like a zebra shell problem.

This invasive species was introduced by boaters into the open and has become a major problem for lake management. Swimmers in waders should wear foot protection and waders should be waded in, as the sharp shells and their skin can be easily cut off.

If you don't necessarily enjoy fishing, you can take the scenic drive along East Lake Road and see the neighboring Skaneateles Lake and Lake Otisco. They are separated by high hills that offer fantastic views of the lake and the northern city of Otisville, New York.

Photographers and nature lovers will observe white-tailed deer and many other bird and animal species in the region. Otisco Lake has a lot to offer, from fishing, hiking, kayaking, camping or just relaxing in and around the countryside of upstate New York.

Otisco Lake Reviews

Based on 0 Reviews

Lake Reviews

(0) Reviews

Hours of Operation




H: oF | L: oF
  • Humidity:

  • Pressure:

  • Cloud Cover:

  • UV Index:

  • Rain Chance:

  • Visibility:

  • Sunrise:

  • Sunset:

H: oF L: oF

  • Winds:

  • Sunrise:

  • Sunset:

H: oF L: oF

  • Winds:

  • Sunrise:

  • Sunset:

H: oF L:oF

  • Winds:

  • Sunrise:

  • Sunset: