Chain of Lakes

Enjoy these lakes all year round! Paddling, Swimming, Boating, Fishing, Skiing, Skating, Snowshoeing, Pond Hockey, Ice Fishing and more!

The 1,178 acres comprising the Fairmont chain of lakes, is a part of a 400 square mile, 20,000-acre watershed. Just south of town, the water flows north through a reservoir from North Silver Lake. These waters are a part of the Minnesota River Watershed, taking our water north all the way up to St. Paul where it enters the Mississippi River and ultimately flows to the Gulf of Mexico. So not only do we want to enjoy our lakes and waters here, but we are responsible for the water that is leaving our state!

Our Lakes

(North to South)

George Lake

Enjoy beautiful plantings while visiting the old Livingston Log Cabin and strolling through Lincoln Park. On the south end, under the bridges, you’ll find the Hobo Park where back in the 1930’s during the great depression, hobos camped and then hopped onto the passing trains to travel town to town in search of work.

This shallow lake is considered a ‘gem’ by many because of its peaceful serenity. In 2014, the Fairmont Lakes Foundation, Inc. (FLF) stocked this lake with 300 Bluegills, so you know you will find an ample supply of fish along with 7 public fishing locations.  Back in the day, this lake was originally called ‘George’s Lake’ for George Tanner, who owned abutting land.

Lake Sisseton

Often silhouetted by the morning sun, the beautiful stone Martin County Courthouse, (circa 1906) appears to rise above the trees just north of Ward Park. Also overlooking the lake, Sylvania Park houses a historic band shell that is used for live musical performances during the summer. There is dining nearby, and the NW side of the lake has the beautiful Day Farm Trail/Bike Path and Heritage Acres 40-acre agricultural interpretative center with community gardens.

Lake Sisseton’s shoreline of rock, gravel, sand and woody debris provide good habitat for fish. And since it is a popular fishing lake, the DNR stock this lake with Walleye fingerlings every other year. In 2014, the FLF stocked this lake with 300 Bluegills. Local lore says there still are remnants of Indian trails along the lakes bank. This lake was named for the Sisseton branch of the Dakota Indian tribe that once dominated this region now known as…Martin County.

Budd Lake

The best roped off sandy swimming beach is here at the park! You’ll also find a great boat launch area and public bathrooms too with an outdoor shower to wash off that sand!

Budd Lake is the middle of the Fairmont Chain of Lakes. Budd Lake is the City’s main source for its drinking water! Knowing that, we think it’s imperative that we all be mindful and use good stewardship practices to help keep this lake (and all the lakes) as clean as possible! This lake is named after our very first settler of the city of Fairmont….William H. Budd.

Hall Lake

Hall Lake and Budd Lake both share Gomsrud Park which is nestled in between. The park with its ample parking, sand pit volley ball courts, playground, picnic tables and pavilion is a perfect gathering spot and there’s also dining nearby. The north end has a great boat launch and handicap accessible fishing pier.

Hall Lake is the largest and deepest of the chain of lakes. It is a great lake not only for waterskiing, but also for sailboats, jet skis, wind surfing, fishing, snowmobiling, pond hockey, etc. While boating on the west side, pay attention to the buoys as the Dutch Creek outlet has created some shallow waters there. Gomsrud Park, between Hall and Budd Lakes, has the largest parking area and boat launch in the city. The DNR routinely stocks the lakes, including Hall with Walleye fingerlings, Muskie and others. This lake is named after one of our early settlers, E. Banks Hall, who in 1856 owned land on the eastern shore.

Amber Lake

This lake feels private, protected and cozy with minimal boat traffic. Cedar Creek Park, on the NW side has beautiful picnic areas, nature trails and bike paths along with some of the best disc golf in the area.

Amber Lake is the only lake not connected with the rest of the chain. Since it is on the upstream end of our Fairmont Chain of Lakes, and sits at a higher elevation than the others, a dam is needed to separate Amber Lake from Hall Lake. If we didn’t have the dam in place, most of the water would drain into the others, making Amber more of a slough or swamp like wetland. In 2014 the DNR stocked this lake with Walleye fingerlings and the FLF stocked it with 400 Bluegills. It is a quiet lake and often preferred by anglers. We think this lake was named by some of the original settlers, back in the 1800’s, who probably came from Amber, New York.

Other Lake Information


Shorebirds commonly seen: Ducks, Geese, Pelicans, Seagulls, Cormorants, Herons and Coots. Most shorebirds arrive in April. Occasionally we will see Eagles and our state bird, the Common Loon. Puddle or Dabbler type of ducks commonly seen: (those that are able to lift off from the water or land immediately and feed with their bottoms tipped up) Mallard, Shoveler, Teal, Wood Duck and the Black Duck. Diver type of ducks commonly seen: (those that have to first patter along the water surface for several yards before they can lift off the water to become airborne) Bufflehead, Canvasback, Redhead and the Ringneck. These guys dive deep depths to feed.


Fish Species: There are over 15 species of fish caught in our lakes. Muskies were introduced in 2016.


Turtles commonly seen: Snapping turtle, Painted turtle and the Soft Shell turtle.


The green microscopic plants that sometimes appear in our lakes are a natural part of any aquatic environment. Most are harmless, but extreme blooms can occur, and if that occurs, don’t swim where it’s thick or a blue-green color.

Kids & Pets

Kids and Pets are great fun to boat with, just make sure all are safe! Kids with life jackets and dogs on a leash. Yes, Fairmont has a ‘leash law’ but also a Dog Park! After boating let your dog out to play at Fairmont’s 1.5-acre dog park located at 1450 South Prairie.

Love our Fairmont Lakes? Do you:

  • Fish, boat, or swim in the lakes? Drink lake water? Benefit from business related to lake activity?
  • Enjoy sunsets and sunrises? Enjoy our many Fairmont parks that rim the lakes?
  • Like walking by the lake at Cedar Creek and the Hobo Trail? Live on the lake?
  • Enjoy our bald eagles, many other birds and lake side wild life?
  • Enjoy activities such as the 4th of July fireworks or the FLF sponsored fishing tournaments?

The quality, promotion of activities and stewardship of our lakes is the Fairmont Lakes Foundation (FLF) mission.

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