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  • OVERVIEW

    Description


    So distinct is Lake Thompson that it is designated a National Natural Landmark. Originally called Dry Woods Lake by American Indians, the lake was renamed for Jacob Thompson, Secretary of the Interior under President James Buchanan. In the 1930s, the lake was completely dry and used for pasture. In the 1980s, the area was a 9,000-acre marsh. Heavy rains and snowmelt in the mid-80s filled the lake to over 20 feet deep.

    A variety of options are open for staying at Lake Thompson Recreation Area: campsites, cabins and a lodge. Planning your vacation at one of these locations is simple, using the online reservation system. Sites in the campground have electricity, dump station and comfort stations with flush toilets and showers. One-room cabins sleep four and have heating, air conditioning and electricity. The lodge at Lake Thompson Recreation Area was once a farm house. Now, the five-bedroom facility houses up to 12 guests in one of the state's most popular recreation areas.

    Author Laura Ingalls Wilder mentions Lake Thompson as one of the Twin Lakes in her books, including "By the Shores of Silver Lake" and "The Long Winter." Modern-day visitors will also have plenty to write home about, as they enjoy the beach, boat ramp, ski beach and playground in the lovely area. Those fishing for walleye, northern pike, crappie, perch and bass have access to a fish-cleaning station and fishing-pole checkout. Hikers, bikers and walkers can take the park tour trail to see all parts of Lake Thompson Recreation Area.

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    Directions

    6 miles SW of Lake Preston, SD off US 14
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    Amenities

    Onsite

    • 50 Amp Available
    • Tent Sites Available
    • Group Area
    • Lake
    • Firewood Available
    • Dump Station
    • BBQ Facilities
    • ADA Accessible
    • Groups Welcome
    • Pets Welcome
    • Rural Setting
    • Family Park
    • Open Year Round
    • Credit Crd Accepted
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    Nearby

    • Full Hookups
    • Internet Access
    • Forest Areas
    • Laundry
    • Diner/Snack Bar
    • Gas
    • Propane
    • Picnic Area
    • Fitness Equipmt
    • Lodging - Other
    • Repair Services
    • Chapel Services
    • 24hr Courtesy Patrol
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    Recreation

    Onsite

    • Beach
    • Playground
    • Boat Ramp
    • ATV/OHV/Mtcy
    • Biking - Road
    • Bird Watching
    • Boating
    • Fishing
    • Hiking
    • Outdoor Games
    • Sightseeing
    • Swimming
    • Water Skiing
    • Water Sports
    • Wildlife Viewing
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    Nearby

    • Pool
    • Gaming/Casino
    • Education Activity
    • Entertainment
    • Family Activity
    • Golfing
    • Hunting
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    Guest Opinions are very important

    Have you stayed at this campground? Share your experience.

    A minusOverall Rating
    09/25/2020

    get out of town

    good walking trails. clean park
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    A minusOverall Rating
    09/16/2020

    September 2020 Getaway

    We made a quick trip (Saturday/Sunday) due to a rainy Friday. We had a great time! The temperature was comfortable to enjoy the outdoors. The sun came out at sunset & it was gorgeous! Sunday was warm & not a cloud in the sky! The only negative experience was a very loud late night party that woke us up! It went silent relatively quickly, so I assume that someone was called to end the disturbance!
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    A minusOverall Rating
    09/15/2020

    Good time fishing

    Very nice campground. Clean and well kept. Three of us couples went there to go fishing. Would go there again.
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    A minusOverall Rating
    09/09/2020

    SD Family

    Softest sand in SD on the beach. Fishing was great. Facilities were maintained. Staff was seen cleaning/driving thru the camp grounds during the day.
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