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SKOKIE LAGOONS WATERSHED


Lake Information

County: Lake

Acreage: 40

Average Depth: 5.51 feet

Recreational Amenities

Boat Fishing? Trolling Motor Only

Boat Ramps? Yes

Boat Rental? Yes

Skiing? No

Swimming? No


There are zebra mussels in this lake.

Lake Status Summary  ( Full PDF Report )

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Species

Rank

Avg Wt.
(pounds)

Avg.
Length
(inches)

Fish Status

BLUEGILL

Good

N/A

N/A

In 2007, bluegill collected ranged in size from 2” to 7.5” long and weighed up to 0.38 lbs.; 39% exceeded 6” long and 3% exceeded 7.5” in length.

CHANNEL CATFISH

Very Good

N/A

N/A

Channel catfish are very popular amongst anglers at the Skokie Lagoons. They’re stocked to maintain their presence and provide sportfishing opportunities.

CRAPPIE

Good

N/A

N/A

Crappie are difficult to collect with electrofishing gear, so once they’re established they reproduce consistently and their maximum size is dependent on the lake having a diverse and abundant predator population, which Skokie Lagoons has!

LARGEMOUTH BASS

Very Good

N/A

N/A

In 2013, 22,000 2” largemouth bass fingerlings were stocked to supplement the fishery. Bass fishermen can be very successful fishing in the Skokie Lagoons!

NORTHERN PIKE

Good

N/A

N/A

1200 8" northern pike are stocked annually. Northern pike are routinely caught by anglers, but were missed in the last survey.

WALLEYE

Very Good

N/A

N/A

Surveys have confirmed a very healthy walleye population in the Skokie Lagoons!

Location: The Skokie Lagoons are located in Glencoe and Winnetka, east of the Eden's Expressway (I-90) between Dundee and Willow Roads.

Description: The Skokie Lagoons are located in the Skokie Valley which lies between two ridges of glacial drift. The southern portion of this valley was a long bay of ancient Lake Chicago. As the lake level receded, this bay became a large marsh. The Skokie River, which drained the upper watershed, ran into the marsh at the north end and exited at the south end as the North Branch of the Chicago River. The Potawatomi Indians referred to the large marsh as "Chewab Skokie" meaning "big, wet prairie." Historically, the marsh had an abundance of fish and wildlife. In 1929, planning began to convert the marsh into a series of lagoons. By 1933, the Forest Preserve District had acquired most of the Skokie marsh so when the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was created in 1933, ten companies of workers were allocated to undertake the project. Construction continued until 1942, at which point four million cubic yards of earth had been excavated and the present day Skokie Lagoons were dug.

The Skokie Lagoon's seven pools cover 242 acres; maximum depth 14.9 feet; average depth 5.5 feet. There is a boat ramp at Tower Road; concessions with boat/electric motor rental, canoe/kayak rental, live bait/tackle, food, and soft drinks open during summer months. No fish cleaning station is available.

History and Status of the Sport Fishery: The Forest Preserve District of Cook County (FPDCC) periodically spot treats aquatic vegetation at main access points; in 2013, water hyacinth and water lettuce were identified, both are aquatic invasive species so research in being done to determine their origin and hardiness. In 1993, the Skokie Lagoons and its watershed were rehabilitated thru a joint project involving the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, Northern Illinois Planning Commission and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

The Skokie Lagoons receive annual stockings of 2200 8" to 10" channel catfish, 1200 8" northern pike, and 11,000 2" walleye.

Sixteen fish species have recently additionally been collected: pumpkinseed sunfish, orange spot sunfish, green sunfish, hybrid sunfish, yellow bass, yellow bullhead, common carp, goldfish, golden shiners, white suckers and gizzard shad were present.

Additional Lake Information: Trolling motor only (no gas motor attached). Two pole and line fishing only.

Contact Information:
FPDCC Fisheries Office
708-403-6951
IDNR County Fisheries Biologist
815-675-2319