Description: Keep It Clean is an organization which was created jointly by Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau, the MN DNR, Lake of the Woods Soil and Water Conservation District and The Friends of Zippel Bay State Park to promote a clean Lake of the Woods and to bring together a variety of stakeholders to do so.

Mission Statement:

Keep It Clean was created to protect, maintain and promote cleanliness for the beautiful landscape, water resources and shorelines of Lake of the Woods as a special place for everyone to visit and enjoy.

Have a game plan for trash removal.

It is a good idea to check with the resort or outfitter whom you are fishing with what options they provide for garbage disposal.

Secure garbage when traveling.

Whether your garbage is in the back of a pickup truck, in a trailer or hauled off the ice or down the road in a different manner, please take a few extra minutes to make sure it is secure.  With wind and bumps on the ice, or increased speed when off the ice and on a road, much littering happens in many cases unknown to the angler.  Let’s do our part to keep garbage, trash and pollutants out of Lake of the Woods!

For more information on Keep It Clean, please contact Lake of the Woods Executive Director of Tourism, Joe Henry @ 320-260-7727 or by e-mail at

Great Progress Continues!

Trash on Lake of the Woods

An unfortunate side-effect of the high angler use in the winter is the disturbing amount of trash left on the ice, which then washes up on local beaches in the spring. A wide variety of objects, from aluminum cans, to wooden blocks, to plastic bags of human waste, all wash up on private and public shorelines. To address concerns about the trash levels on the lake, Lake of the Woods County established a partnership with the Lake of the Woods Tourism Bureau, private citizens and business owners, including resorts, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The charge to this group was to formulate workable solutions, and to educate resource users about the problem.

It is difficult to identify the reasons anglers would leave trash on the ice, but it is likely that some of it blows out of trucks and some may simply be lost in the snow when garbage is stored outside the fish house. To address garbage being lost by accident, consider being more careful when transporting the garbage back to shore. To make garbage easier to find after being stored outside the fish house, try to use garbage bags that are not white. Also, don’t store your garbage outside the fish house when the wind starts to blow. It would be simple to store it in the back of a truck. Finally, remove the wood used to block up your house, and don’t use treated wood for that purpose.

In past years, dumpsters have been provided at popular access locations. Due to hauling costs and other long-term budgetary influences, that program was discontinued. Please continue to do a good job taking your garbage with you, and make arrangements to dispose of trash when you get back to the resort or your home.

For more details on Keep It Clean or Lake of the Woods, contact Lake of the Woods Tourism at or by calling 1-218-634-1174.




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