It was a fun time at the lake -- until the otter arrived.
After spending about an hour swimming with friends in Bone Lake near Luck, Wis., on Saturday, Rory Kliewer began to climb a ladder onto a dock when she suddenly felt something bite her backside and thigh.
"I thought it was a northern pike," the 12-year-old Minneapolis girl said Wednesday. "I thought a fish was after me."
As she threw the creature off of her, she realized that the animal was an otter -- later estimated at 3 1/2 feet long and about 40 pounds.
"It was a big, nasty one," said Rory, who had been staying at a friend's family cabin over the weekend.
The otter then bit Rory's head and pulled itself onto her, scratching her face.
© Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi
12-year-old Rory Kliewer shows the scratches on her face and ear Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014, at her home in Minneapolis after being attacked by an otter while swimming Saturday, Aug. 9, at Bone Lake in Polk County, Wis. Kliewer sustained bites, scratches and bruises during the attack.