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Cottage Grove project data

Dam length 1,750 ft 533.4 m
Height 95 ft 29 m
Elevation (NGVD*) 808 ft 246.3 m
Lake length 3 mi 4.8 km
Area when full 1,156 ac 486.6 ha
*National Geodetic Vertical Datum

Cottage Grove pamphlet

Contact us about Cottage Grove:
General: 541-684-4300
Recreation: 541-942-5631

Email us about Cottage Grove

Cottage Grove Dam & Reservoir

Cottage Grove Dam and Reservoir is located at river mile 29 of the Coast Fork of the Willamette River, about five miles south of Cottage Grove, Ore. Cottage Grove is an earthfill dam with concrete spillway and was completed in 1942 at a cost of $3.3 million. Since then, it has helped prevent almost $1.2 billion in potential flood damages and controls runoff drained by the Coast Fork Willamette River, an area of 104 square miles.

The authorized primary project purpose of the Cottage Grove Dam is flood damage reduction, but other approved uses include irrigation, recreation, and improved navigation downstream.

Cottage Grove recreation

Alcohol ban: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers implemented an alcohol ban at Cottage Grove and Dorena lakes to improve recreation quality, public and employee safety, and resource allocation and protection.

Camping: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers operates all parks at Cottage Grove Lake. To make reservations, call the National Reservation Service at 1-877-444-6777 or go to the Pine Meadows campgrounds' website.

Pine Meadows developed campground: Open May 18 - Sept. 10 (last night to camp is 9/9). It has 85 campsites, paved roads, flush toilets, showers, dump station, campfire rings, picnic tables, gate attendants, children's play area and a marked but unsupervised swim area (no hookups) with a life jacket loaner stationFees: $22 per night per site; $6 per day, per extra vehicle.

Pine Meadows primitive campground: Open: May 25 - Sept. 3 (last night to camp is 9/2). This is a minimally-developed campground with 15 individual campsites, vault toilets, drinking water, gravel roads, picnic tables, fire rings, no hookups and no showers (primitive sites are reserved as Pine Meadows Campground sites A-O). Fees: $14 per night, per site; $6 per day, per extra vehicle.

Birding: The reservoir is a designated stop along the Big River Loop of the Willamette Valley Birding Trail.  This trail is a self-guided driving tour that includes 138 birding hotspots. Visitors can see rare birds like the purple martin, the willow flycatcher and the yellow-breasted chat near Cottage Grove Lake. Osprey and purple martins nest in structures maintained by the Corps.

Day-use parks: Cottage Grove Lake has four day-use only parks, three on the lakeshore and one on the river immediately below the dam. All are open May 11-Sept. 9, and are closed daily from dusk until 8:00 a.m. There is no fee for day-use areas and there are no group picnic areas or shelters available for reservations. For more information, call the Willamette Valley Project Park Ranger Office at (541) 942-5631.

Lakeside ParkLocated on London Road just past the dam, Lakeside Park has paved roads and parking lots, flush toilets, picnic tables and fire rings. There is a boat launch ramp with a courtesy dock located near the entrance to the park. The boat ramp is open year-round and has a life jacket loaner station.

Riverside Park: On the east bank of the river, downstream from the dam, Riverside Park is a minimally developed area with a gravel road and parking area, two picnic tables and a vault toilet. A paved path with pull-outs suitable for wheelchairs is close enough to the river for fishing. No drinking water is available.

Wilson Creek ParkOn Reservoir Road at the southwest end of the lake, Wilson Creek Park has paved roads and parking lots, flush toilets, picnic tables, fire rings, a children's play area and an unsupervised swim area with a life jacket loaner station. A boat launch ramp with a courtesy dock is near the park's entrance and is open on a seasonal basis.

Getting around

 

Environmental stewardship at Cottage Grove Dam

Restoration of degraded uplands, wetlands and streams on Corps lands is a central focus of the Willamette Valley Environmental Stewardship program. Recent efforts include replacing exotic and invasive plants with native trees and shrubs, and restoring hydrology and topography to support native plant communities and wildlife habitat.

The reservoir is a designated stop along the Big River Loop of the Willamette Valley Birding Trail. This trail is a self-guided driving tour that includes 138 birding hotspots. Visitors can see rare birds like the purple martin, the willow flycatcher and the yellow-breasted chat near Cottage Grove Lake. Osprey and purple martins nest in structures maintained by the Corps.

The Corps works with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to support resident game and nongame fisheries within the waters of the Coast Fork Willamette River.