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Watertown's Orange Loop is a paved, multi-use trail that forms a semicircle around the clear waters of Lake Kampeska to the city's northwest. Much like the other trails in the city's recreational trail system, the Blue Loop and the Red Loop, the Orange Loop does require some on-road segments to form a continuous loop, but the pathway is well-signed to keep cyclists and pedestrians on the right track.
On the southern side of the lake, the off-road trail picks up at the intersection of Pompeska Drive and S Lake Drive, heading east and north along the side of the road. Trail users are treated to scenic views of the lake to the north, with some lovely South Dakota farmland to the south. Passing by a local golf course, the trail meets up with a segment of the Blue Loop, which it follows around the edge of the lake until reaching the junction where the trail meets the straight, flat pathway that occupies a former railroad corridor heading northwest. Nearby Forsberg Park offers a nice place for a breather or a picnic lunch, before continuing up to the north side of the lake.
The trail has a slight on-shoulder gap along N Lake Drive before picking up again about a half-mile to the west, where it continues along the side of the road, passing by a number of lakeshore homes as it winds its way back south and west. The trail terminates within the Codington County Memorial Park & Campground, a popular RV park and campsite - cyclists can continue on the roadways to form a full loop back to the starting point, although be warned that no bike lanes or wide shoulders are available along this stretch.
Parking and restrooms are available along the trail at Jackson Park, located on S Lake Drive, and at Stokes-Thomas Lake City Park, located at 90 S Lake Drive. Additional parking is available at the boat launch at the eastern end of N Lake Drive, and at the Codington County Memorial Park & Campground, located at the western end of N Lake Drive.
As part of the loop around Lake Kampeska, this trail provides great views of the lake.
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