Dexter Lake

Quick Facts

Dexter Lake


(541) 937-2131

Map Directions

Things To Do


22 miles southeast of Eugene, Dexter Lake is a popular recreation area offering year-round fishing, seasonal water skiing, sailing, swimming, picnicking and hunting. The area is also managed for wildlife habitat such as waterfowl, blacktail deer, upland game birds, wintering elk, bald eagles, osprey and many other species. Dexter Dam was completed in 1954 and provides flood control and has one generator, which produces 15,000 kilowatts. These dams and reservoirs work together for the purposes of flood damage reduction, hydropower generation, irrigation, recreation, fish and wildlife enhancement, and downstream water quality improvement within the Willamette River drainage system. To mitigate impacts to salmon and steelhead caused by dams on the Middle Fork of the Willamette River, the Corps of Engineers built Willamette Fish Hatchery near Oakridge and the holding ponds below Dexter Dam. These facilities are operated by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, with funds provided by the Corps and the state of Oregon.

Four public use areas are maintained around the lake. The ACOE maintained Middle Fork boat launch offers visitors access to Dexter Lake, and the South Side Fishing Area allows visitors to conveniently fish from shore. In addition, the Corps-operated Orchard Park is located on the northeast end of the lake and includes a vault toilet and picnic tables. Lowell Park and Dexter Park are the primary state-operated recreation areas around the lake.

Map of Dexter Lake

Latitude, Longitude: 43.909395, -122.782860



  • Boating

    Several boat ramps provide access to Dexter Lake.

  • Bicycling

    Biking is available in the parks and recreation areas located around Dexter Lake.

  • Fishing

    Fishing is a popular activity at Dexter Lake.

  • Golfing

    An 18-hole disc golf course is now open at the nearby Dexter State Recreation Site.

  • Hiking

    All parks located on the North Shore have access to the Eugene-to-Pacific Crest Trail.

  • Horseback Riding

    A horse trail is located in the nearby state-operated Dexter State Recreation Site.

  • Hunting

    Hunting is allowed in some areas around the lake.

  • Picnicking

    Picnic tables are located at various locations around Dexter Lake, and a reservable group site is located in Lowell State Recreation Site.

  • RVing

    No RVing.

  • Water Sports

    Various water sports such as swimming and water skiing can be enjoyed on Dexter Lake.


Orchard Park is only open from May to September.



From Eugene, the lake is located 22 miles southeast on OR 58.

Phone Numbers


(541) 937-2131