Detroit Lake State Recreation Area

Park History

The area originally was obtained in 1955 under special use permit from the U. S. Forest Service with the cooperation of the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers. This location had been a developed Forest Service campground prior to its lease to State Parks. The park is forested with second growth Douglas fir and was extensively logged in the period before the World War II. The 400-foot-deep reservoir was created in 1953 when the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers completed the Detroit Dam project. The lake and the dam were named after the community of Detroit, populated originally by people from Michigan.

Acreage: 469

Annual overnight attendance: 89,697

Annual day-use attendance: 107,764

Detroit Lake State Recreation Area FAQ


Where can I swim?

The lakes and rivers found within Oregon State Parks are open to unsupervised swimming. You are responsible for your own safety. Before you enter the water, you should judge your swimming skills against possible strong currents, cold water, underwater objects and steep drop-offs. Remember, that many of our natural bodies of water and man-made reservoirs are filled by snow runoff and remain cold year round. Please bring and wear a personal flotation device and swim with a buddy.

About Camping

How many vehicles can we have at the campground?

Detroit Lake SRA campground has a strict vehicle policy, allowing a MAXIMUM of 2 vehicles per campsite. Only one vehicle is included with standard camp fees. A second vehicle kept at a campsite (or alternate parking area) is subject to a nightly Extra Vehicle  fee, paid upon arrival at the park. The nightly Extra Vehicle fee is $7.

Is there a dump station at the campground?

No, there is not a dump station at the campground. You will have to get one of the full hookup (power, sewer, water) sites if you need sewer. The dump station at Fisherman's Bend Campground, approximately 20 miles west of Detroit Lake Campground, is CLOSED INDEFINITELY.

Can RV campers use the non-hook up tent sites?

RV campers can use the non-hook up tent sites but there are length limits on most tent areas.

Can tent campers camp in a hookup site?

Yes, but they will pay the hookup site fee from May 1st to September 30th. In the off season when all the tent sites are closed you will only be charged the tent site price if not using hook-ups.

If I am not camping, can I come into the campground to fish, swim, have a lunch or launch my boat?

No. The campground is for campers only. The Mongold State Park day-use area is located 1.5 miles west of the campground. Mongold has several picnic areas, a swimming area and a boat launch. There are several areas around the lake to fish.

I am camping at Detroit but would like to use the Mongold day-use area. Do I need a seperate permit for Mongold?

No. Your camping permit from the campground will work at Mongold. Make sure the permit is clearly displayed.

What's Allowed

Statewide FAQ

Available via this link