Zippel Bay State Park
By Jim Umhoefer
The scale of Lake of the Woods is hard to imagine: 1,485 square miles of water, 65,000 miles of shoreline, and 14,000 islands. From the park beach, it’s 80 miles to the northern tip of the lake. The lake is 55 miles wide at its widest and varies from 4 to 35 feet deep in the southern bays to over 150 feet deep in northern areas. If you time it right, the wild blueberries will be ripe when you visit Zippel Bay State Park. Add some to your breakfast pancakes for a savory memory of your stay here and take a walk along the three-mile sand beach of Lake of the Woods.
Zippel Bay State Park is located 10 miles northeast of Williams in Lake of the Woods County on the Waters of the Dancing Sky Scenic Byway.
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While hiking or horseback riding on the six-mile trail system at the 3,000-acre park, you might spot some Ruffed or Sharptail grouse.
Camping and Lodging
The rustic campsites at Zippel Bay are divided into four separate, wooded loops. Although most campers come up here for Lake of the Woods fishing, the 57-site campground is rarely full. The primitive group camp is available for riding clubs and other special gatherings on a reservation basis.
When people talk about winter around Lake of the Woods, they usually mention ice fishing. You can rent an ice-fishing shanty at any nearby resort and even fly into your favorite spot to catch your limit of Walleyes and Northerns.
Zippel Bay State Park has only three miles of groomed snowmobile trails, but Snowmobilers can extend their ride on 300 miles of local Grant-in-Aid trails.
Snowshoeing is allowed everywhere but on groomed trails.