Lake Vermillion State Recreation Area

State: South Dakota

Short Name: Lake Vermillion State Rec Area

Address 1: 26140 451st Ave.

City: Canistota

Zip: 57012

Phone: (605) 296-3643

Open: Open May through October

Number of Sites: 66

Electric: 62

Camp URL:

Full Hook: Yes

Known for its clear waters and abundant fish, Lake Vermillion Recreation Area has become a popular area among fishermen, boaters and swimmers. During the fall, sportsmen can find waterfowl and upland game within minutes from the park, making it an ideal hunting camp. This 512-acre reservoir is located 27 miles west of Sioux Falls.

Lake Vermillion has two campgrounds, one on each side of the 512-acre lake. The west unit features a modern comfort station, swimming beach, picnic area, playground equipment, dump station and fish cleaning station. This unit also has a wheelchair accessible campsite and fishing pier. A 36-unit campground has recently been developed on the east side of the lake, with a comfort station, playground and boat ramp.

In addition, a wheelchair accessible camping cabin in the west unit provides visitors with a comfortable camping alternative.

Anglers looking for a variety of sport fish are certain to enjoy an afternoon on Lake Vermillion. The lake has a strong population of walleye, northern pike, crappie and blue gill. Boat ramps in the east and west campgrounds provide easy access to the water and an accessible fishing pier provides hours of fun for people of all abilities.

Lake Vermillion was created by impounding waters from the east fork of the Vermillion River in 1958. The river itself was first noted on an 1801 map by a French trapper who called it Otter Stream.

The word vermillion means vivid red color. Some say the stream got its name from the outcropping of red quartzite along its bank.