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Lake of the Ozarks History

The 1929 Great Osage River Project created one of the world’s largest man-made lakes known as The Lake of the Ozarks. The construction of Bagnell Dam began on August 6, 1929 and was completed two years later with the annexation of the river on February 2, 1931. The Lake of the Ozarks opened to the public on May 30, 1931 and thousands of travelers have enjoyed the natural beauty and recreational opportunities at The Lake every year since.

Nestled in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains with its lush forests and rolling hills, the Lake offers dramatic vistas from the surrounding bluffs. Many of the indigenous wildlife such as whitetail deer and the Great Blue Heron, as well as other water fowl, are often seen in The Lake area. The seasons bring their own special beauty to The Lake region, with Winter allowing expansive views of snow covered hills, then giving way in the Spring to the delicate scattering of the dogwood and rebud blossoms amidst the budding forests. The Summer brings a constantly changing panorama of misty hills at dawn to forests of deep green at midday and dramatic evening sunsets reflecting their opulent colors in the shimmering waters of The Lake. Then Autumn’s vibrant colors promise to keep you spellbound as the hills reveal their annual fall appearance.

The nearly 58,000 acres surrounding the Lake’s 92 miles of water creates over 1,375 miles of shoreline, all of which provides unforgettable scenery and a variety of leisure and recreational activities for all ages to enjoy.