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CURRENTLY 87°
FAIR
WINDS SOUTH @ 8MPH
HUMIDITY 29%
VISIBILITY 10MI
DEW POINT 51°

Sterling Lake

Lake County, IL
Lake County, IL
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Sterling Lake is located east of I-294 north of Rt 173 in Van Patton Woods Forest Preserve near Wadsworth.
Sterling Lake, formerly known as Vulcan Gravel Pits, was constructed in 1939. The lake is located adjacent to the Des Plaines River and is connected via a 10" to 12" tube with a hinged gate so water can flow in during high water events. The Lake County Forest Preserve District acquired the area in 1974 with an emphasis on providing recreational fishing opportunities. Sterling Lake is 74 acres, has a maximum depth of 23.0 feet, an average depth of 14 feet, and a shoreline length of 2.3 miles. A crushed limestone, multi-use path surrounds the perimeter. There are handicap accessible fishing piers and a gravel ramp for launching a canoe/kayak or electric-motor-only car-top boats. No concession facilities are available. No fish cleaning station is available.
Two pole and line fishing only. Trolling motors only.
69 acres
LAKE SIZE
23 feet
MAX DEPTH
666 feet
ELEVATION
BOATING RESTRICTIONS
Electric only
AMENITIES
Boat Landing
Camping
Swimming
Boat Rentals
Picnicking
Skiing
FISH TO CATCH
Black Crappie
Bluegill
Channel Catfish
Largemouth Bass
Muskie
Walleye
NOTE: This list may not be all inclusive of all speices present in Sterling Lake.
TOPO MAP FOR MEMBERS
AREA SERVICES
FISHING OUTLOOK
BLACK CRAPPIE
Good GOOD
In 2013 sampling, fish measured from 7" to 11.8" and weighed up to 0.9 lbs., 44% exceeded 9", 31% exceeded 10", and 19% of the catch exceeded 11" long.
BLUEGILL
Average AVERAGE
In 2013 sampling, bluegill ranged from 4" to 6.7", with the biggest weighing 0.2 lbs. 10% were longer than 6", but none exceeded 7" long. Sterling Lake is an old gravel pit which has matured a little, but is still a fairly infertile lake relative to older systems.
CHANNEL CATFISH
Good GOOD
This species is stocked every year at 8" to 10", and channel catfish are a popular species for weekend fishermen enjoying the quiet of the Park.
LARGEMOUTH BASS
Good GOOD
In 2013 sampling, fish measured between 6" to 15.5" and weighed up to 1.9 lbs. 24% were over 12" long, 17% exceeded 14" and 10% exceeded 15" (legal length). This size structure maintains reproductive potential and helps balance panfish species for better overall sportfishing opportunities.
MUSKELLUNGE
Fair FAIR
In 2013 sampling, muskie ranged from 31" to 34" in length, with the biggest weighing 12.6 lbs. Muskie have been periodically stocking in Sterling Lake since 1990 so the possibility of trophy size fish exists.
WALLEYE
Poor POOR
In 2013 sampling, 1 walleye was collected; the fish measured 10.3". In 2011 a single 19" fish was collected and fishermen report legal catches (>18") for those targeting walleye.
PLACES TO SAY
STAY 22: Sterling Lake
HISTORY AND STATUS OF FISHERY
In 2013, a D/C electrofishing survey was conducted to assess the overall fishery. Sterling Lake receives periodic stockings of 5000 2" walleye, 150 11" muskie and annual stockings of 600 8" to 10" channel catfish. 14 species were detected during this survey. In addition to the species listed, you can also find pumpkinseed sunfish, warmouth, yellow perch, spotted sucker, bluntnose minnow, bowfin, common carp, and yellow bullhead. Historically, yellow bass, white sucker, brook silverside, and johnny darters.

CONTACT / CONTROLLING AUTHORITY
Lake County Forest Preserve District
847-367-6640
IDNR Fisheries Biologist, Frank Jakubicek
815-675-2319
NOTICE: Lake-Link Inc assumes no responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions of the information for Sterling Lake. Although we strive to provide the most accurate information as we can the information contained in this page is provided on an "as is" basis with no guarantees of completeness, accuracy, usefulness or timeliness.
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