Minnesota: The Beauty in Your Backyard – Mille Lacs Lake

Nov 9, 2022 | 0 comments

By Dana Botz

I am fortunate to live in one of the most beautiful places in Minnesota. I live on Mille Lacs Lake. The lake is literally in my backyard. It is different every day. Some days the water is calm and other days, like yesterday, we had 30+ mph winds coming across the lake and battering our house. The waves were huge! I love watching the sunset every evening and watching how the sunset location shifts across the horizon as the seasons march on. There is so much you can do on this lake and so many ways to get involved with the activities on or near the lake.


Summer is the favorite season of most people who come to Mille Lacs Lake. The lake is Minnesota’s second-largest inland lake with 132,516 acres. Fishing, boating and camping are the number one summer activities on the lake. The lake is home to walleye, northern pike, muskie, bass and more. (I’m still waiting to catch a muskie!) There are multiple boat landings alone the shore.

Camping options in the area:

Woman holding a northern pike on a boat
Big fish,but not the one I was hoping for.
Man and girl campfire
Deep conversations around the campfire.


Autumn is my favorite time on the lake. It’s the time of year when people start pulling in their docks and closing-up their cabins. It becomes so quiet that I can almost believe I am the only person on the lake. The trees along the lakeshore come alive with red, orange and gold and the squirrels go wild gathering acorns from my oak tree.

Beauty over the ice.


Winter is another busy season on the lake when a city pops up on the ice. It is a city of people who love ice fishing. There are roads plowed on the lake and with bridges spanning open water. There is a phenomenon that occurs in the winter that is called, “making ice”. You can hear the cracking and groaning of the ice in your house! It’s quite eerie, especially when it is quiet at night. The lake also brings snowmobilers, cross country skiers, and snowshoers. There is one activity on the lake that I have never seen anywhere else in Minnesota and that is ice racing. I love watching the ice races right outside our backdoor. The motorcycles and ATVs fly around an icy track.


Spring is the most impressive season of the year on the big lake. It is ICE SHOVE time! As the ice melts and breaks up, the wind blows walls of ice to the shore. Sometimes, buildings are damaged and can even block the road requiring snowplows to remove the ice. The piles of ice can be taller than a house! The ice can be so destructive, but the sound that it makes as it piles up on the shore is one you will never forget. It sounds like tinkling glass.

The possibilities are endless.

Well, I’ve taken you through the seasons on Mille Lacs and there is so much more to do than what I’ve described. I would encourage you to bring your camper or tent and catch a fish or catch a wave or even just catch a sunset. The possibilities are endless.

Connect with me!

Dana Botz


[email protected]


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