Indian Lake is in Logan County, about 10 miles northwest of the city of Bellefontaine. It is accessible from State Routes 33, 708, 117, 366 and 235.
There are no horsepower limits at Indian Lake. Indian Lake State Park offers parking lots, boat launching ramps, boat docks, fishing piers, camping facilities, a Nature Center, two swimming beaches, a bike path and hiking trail, and picnic areas.
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The Indian Lake region was originally a group of small kettle lakes and marshland formed along the Great Miami River when the last glacier receded across Ohio. A large wetland called the “Game Preserve” remains on the northeast corner of the lake today.
The primary purpose of constructing Indian Lake in 1851 was to supply water for part of the elaborate canal system in Ohio at that time. Old Indian Lake, a portion of the current lake, provided enough water for the Miami and Erie Canals to remain at a four-foot water depth.
The usefulness of the canal system was short lived due to expansion of railroads and canals were falling out of favor almost before the lake was finished. By 1898, the lake became known as Indian Lake and the purpose of the lake switched to recreation. In the early 1900s, Indian Lake became a popular destination due to its amusement park, abundant fish and wildlife, and good rail passenger service. By 1949, Indian Lake State Park became one of the additions to the new Department of Natural Resources.
- Indian Lake is one of Ohio’s best saugeye lakes based on angler reports and gill net surveys. Consistent survival and excellent growth of stocked fish in this shallow and extremely productive lake have led to good numbers and sizes of saugeye available to anglers. Currently, there is an abundance of age-2 saugeye from an extremely successful 2018 stocking. Many of these fish will be over the 15-inch minimum size limit by early summer 2020 and could reach close to 18 inches by late fall.
- The crappie fishery has also done very well in recent years with a large population of both black and white crappie over nine inches. Not just a numbers lake, Indian provides anglers with a great chance at catching very large crappie in the 14-16 inch range.
- Largemouth bass have done well with the abundant shallow water habitat and vegetation at Indian Lake. There are good numbers of fish, although the large majority are under 15 inches.
- Indian Lake is one of the best bluegill fisheries in central Ohio and is one of the few lakes where anglers can consistently catch fish over eight inches.
- Approximately half of the channel catfish caught in the most recent hoop net surveys were exactly eight years old, with most falling in the 18-20 inch category. Because of their long life span, these catfish should continue to grow and remain in good numbers for years to come.
- To complement the channel catfish population, the naturally occurring flathead catfish population has continued to grow over the past decade with numerous fish in the 20-30 pound range caught by anglers every year.
- White bass are also abundant in Indian Lake and are often caught incidentally by anglers targeting other species. They can be targeted during the spring though, when they make a spawning run up the South Fork of the Great Miami River near the Moundwood access.
- Indian Lake Channel Catfish Survey
- Indian Lake Crappie Survey
- Indian Lake Largemouth Bass Survey
- Indian Lake Saugeye Survey