If it's cold, you know, near zero? Well, fishing is great in South Dakota!

Middle of July, in the 90s, and hot? No problem, the fishing is still great in South Dakota!

One of the reasons is the many lakes we have here in the Sunshine State. Oh, we're not the 10,000 Lakes place. Nope. That goes to our neighbor. But we do have some dandies!

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MORE: The 10 Deepest Lakes in South Dakota

How many of the ten biggest lakes (by area) in South Dakota can you name? And for that matter, how many of them have you dropped a line into on a hot July afternoon or through the ice on a cold January day?

Now, I'd think most would know the biggest of the big. That would be Lake Oahe, which is just behind Oahe Dam on the Missouri River in the middle of South Dakota.

Lake Oathe Facts:

  • Area: 3,12,000 acres
  • Fourth-largest reservoir in the US (By volume)
  • Approximately 231 miles long
  • Begins near Pierre, SD and extends north into North Dakota
  • Has 2,250 miles of shoreline

I'd bet even the non-fishing folks might know that. But what about the others in the biggest Top Ten?

Are you Sharpe enough to name them all? Can you Traverse and identify the entire list? Or would you have to admit Bitter defeat? Ok, ok, that's enough of the hints to get you started.

South Dakota's 10 Biggest Lakes:

  1. Lake Oahe 3,12,000  - Area in acres
  2. Lake Francis Case 1,02,000 - Area in acres
  3. Lake Sharpe 56,884 - Area in acres
  4. Lewis and Clark Lake 31,400 - Area in acres
  5. Lake Thompson 20,000 - Area in acres
  6. Waubay Lake 15,540 - Area in acres
  7. Big Stone Lake 12,610 - Area in acres
  8. Lake Traverse 11,200 - Area in acres
  9. Bitter Lake 9,900 - Area in acres
  10. Belle Fourche Reservoir 8,063 - Area in acres

SOURCE: World Atlas 

South Dakota's Deepest Lakes

Our neighbors in Minnesota may boast of being the home of 10,000 lakes. Here in South Dakota, we have hundreds of our own. This random website says we have 131 lakes in South Dakota. We'll just take their word for it.

There's nothing like getting out on the lake. On a board, on a jet ski, or just swimming in the waves.

Just don't think about what's in the water. While you're at it, don't think about how deep the lake is. How far down into the murky depth of South Dakota?

But that is an interesting question. One to think about while we are on solid land. Just how deep are the lakes in South Dakota?

To keep things in perspective, Lake Superior has an average depth of 500 feet, and at its deepest is just over 1300 feet deep.