Otter Lake, situated near the town of Parry Sound is a stunning body of water that has captured the imagination of visitors and residents alike for centuries. It's quite large and is divided up into Big Otter, Little Otter and "The Long Arm". It covers an area of approximately 510 hectares with 38 kms. of shoreline. The lake has an mean depth of 11 meters, with its deepest point measuring 45 meters. From its Aboriginal roots to its modern-day cottage destination, it has a rich and diverse history that makes it a fascinating destination for those who appreciate natural beauty and a deep connection to the past.
The water quality of Otter Lake is monitored regularly by the Otter Lake Cottagers Association, which is dedicated to preserving the ecological health of the lake. According to their monitoring data, the water quality of Otter Lake is generally very good, with low levels of phosphorus and other contaminants.
Aboriginal History of Otter Lake
The traditional territories of the Anishinaabe people, including the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Potawatomi, have encompassed the area around Otter Lake for thousands of years. The Anishinaabe people have a deep spiritual and cultural connection to the land and water, and their presence can be seen in the area's place names, stories, and traditions.
The Anishinaabe people have always had a close relationship with Otter Lake, using it as a source of food, transportation, and spiritual renewal. The lake was home to a variety of fish species, including lake trout, pike, and whitefish, which were caught using traditional fishing methods such as nets, spears, and hooks. The Anishinaabe people also used birch bark canoes to travel across the lake and to other parts of their territory.
The Anishinaabe people believed that all living things were interconnected and that the land and water were sacred. They performed ceremonies and rituals to honor the spirits of the lake and to ask for blessings and protection. Today, many Anishinaabe people continue to live in the area, many on Parry Island, and to maintain their cultural traditions, including their connection to Otter Lake.
History of Otter Lake
Otter Lake has a long and fascinating history that spans many centuries. The lake was formed during the last Ice Age, which ended around 10,000 years ago. As the glaciers receded, they left behind a vast network of lakes and rivers, including Otter Lake.
For thousands of years, Otter Lake was known only to the Anishinaabe people and the wildlife that lived in and around it. However, in the late 18th century, European explorers began to arrive in the area, drawn by the abundant natural resources and the potential for trade. By the mid-19th century, settlers had established communities around the lake, including the town of Parry Sound, which was founded in 1887.
Over the years, Otter Lake has become a popular destination for tourists and outdoor enthusiasts. The lake offers a wide range of recreational activities, including swimming, boating, fishing, and hiking. It is also home to several camps and resorts that cater to visitors looking for a peaceful retreat in the heart of nature.
Real Estate Market on Otter Lake
Otter Lake is a highly desirable location for those looking to buy real estate in the Parry Sound area. The lake's stunning natural beauty and abundance of recreational activities make it a popular choice for both year-round residents and seasonal visitors.
According to recent data, the median price of a waterfront property on Otter Lake was around $900,000. in 2022. Prices can vary widely depending on the location, size, and whether the cottage is located on the Long Arm or the main lakes.. Sme of the most expensive properties on the lake are large, luxurious homes with expansive views of the water. Despite the high prices, demand for properties on Otter Lake remains strong. Many buyers are drawn to the area's natural beauty, tranquility, and sense of community.
2019 - 6 Sold $322,000 - $1,617,500 | Median $735,000
2020 - 13 Sold $292,000 - $1,075,000 | Median $542,425
2021 - 16 Sold $530,000 - $1,795,000 | Median $1,109,000
2022 - 10 Sold $322,000 - $1617,500 | Median $918,750
* Freehold properties - The Lakelands Association of Realtors®
The marina on Otter Lake offers a range of services for boaters, including boat rentals, repairs, and supplies. The marina is also a great place to launch your own boat and explore the lake.
Attractions around the Otter Lake area
There are many local attractions near Otter Lake that make it a popular destination for tourists and residents alike. Some of the most popular attractions include:
- Algonquin Provincial Park - This stunning park is located just a short drive from Otter Lake and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Ontario. The park features over 2,000 lakes and rivers, as well as hiking trails, campsites, and wildlife viewing opportunities.
- The Island Queen Cruise - Parry Sound is a charming town that offers a range of restaurants, shops, and cultural attractions. One of the most popular activities in Parry Sound is the Island Queen Cruise, which takes visitors on a scenic tour of the islands and waterways around Parry Sound.
- The Bobby Orr Hall of Fame - Hockey fans won't want to miss the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame, located in Parry Sound. The museum features exhibits and memorabilia from the life and career of Bobby Orr, one of the greatest hockey players of all time.
- Seguin Trail - This scenic trail is a great option for hikers, bikers, and snowmobilers. The trail winds through the beautiful forests and wetlands around Otter Lake, offering stunning views of the natural surroundings.
Otter Lake is a unique and special destination that has something for everyone. Whether you're interested in exploring the rich history and culture of the local Aboriginal people, enjoying the natural beauty of the lake and surrounding wilderness, or taking advantage of the many recreational opportunities available in the area, Otter Lake is a great choice. The area's real estate market is thriving, with a range of options available for those looking to buy or rent a property on the lake. The local attractions, including Algonquin Provincial Park, the Island Queen Cruise, and the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame, are sure to keep visitors entertained and engaged. With its stunning natural surroundings, fascinating history, and vibrant community, Otter Lake is a destination that should not be missed.