Fish and Aquatic Life
Pike Lake is a 522-acre drainage lake in Washington County (WDNR, 1991). The lake is mesotrophic, bordering on eutrophic. It has an abundant aquatic plant population. Phosphorus loading from polluted runoff is a problem (WDNR, 1994). The lake has a good walleye fishery, but mercury has been found in some walleye and a fish consumption advisory exists for this species. The pugnose shiner, a fish on the Wisconsin Threatened species list and the least darter, a fish on the state's watch or concern list, have both been found in Pike Lake, a unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest. The Pike Lake unit is on the northeast shore.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Source: 1963, Surface Water Resources of Washington County Pike Lake - T10N, R18E, Sec. 23,
A large, depression basin in the last drainage line of the Green Bay glacier. The lake is generally shallow with one deep basin, presumably the result of the presence of an ice block following glacial recession. Managed for panfish and walleye, with yellow perch the principle game fish. Carp are common to the shallow areas, but do not constitute a management problem. The Rubicon River both enters and leaves the lake on its north shore in a cattail, sedge marsh. About 40 per cent of the shore line is marsh associated, an estimated 180 acres of wetland adjoin the stream. Adequate public access for boat launching is provided by town roads ending on the west shore; however, parking is difficult, and public bathing and picnicking areas are not available. Parking is, in fact, prohibited by town ordinance. As part of the Outdoor Recreation Act Program, 1 192 acres adjoiningthis lake are to be acquired for a new state park. A fish refuge has been established on the channel above the dam and the Rubicon River below the dam for a distance of about 0.5 miles as protection for walleyes and northern pike during spawning runs. Hunting is permitted and the lake receives some pressure from nearby Hartford.
Surface Acres = 522, S.D.F. = 1.19, Maximum Depth = 45 feet
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Kettle Moraine RD KMSF Pike Lake Beach was assessed for the 2018 listing cycle; E. coli data sample data were clearly below the 2018 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use. This beach was meeting this designated use and was not considered impaired.
Author Ashley Beranek
Pike Lake (858300) was placed on the impaired waters list for Mercury in fish tissue in 1998. This water was assessed during the 2016 listing cycle; total phosphorus and chlorophyll sample data were clearly below 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use and Fish and Aquatic Life use. This lake is considered impaired for Fish Consumption use and meeting REC and FAL uses.
Author Aaron Larson
Wisconsin has over 84,000 miles of streams, 15,000 lakes and milllions of acres of wetlands. Assessing the condition of this vast amount of water is challenging. The state's water monitoring program uses a media-based, cross-program approach to analyze water condition. An updated monitoring strategy (2015-2020) is now available. Compliance with Clean Water Act fishable, swimmable standards are located in the Executive Summary of Water Condition in 2018. See also the 'monitoring and projects' tab.
Wisconsin's Water Quality Standards provide qualitative and quantitative goals for waters that are protective of Fishable, Swimmable conditions [Learn more]. Waters that do not meet water quality standards are considered impaired and restoration actions are planned and carried out until the water is once again fishable and swimmable
Management goals can include creation or implementation of a Total Maximum Daily Load analysis, a Nine Key Element Plan, or other restoration work, education and outreach and more. If specific recommendations exist for this water, they will be displayed below online.
Monitoring the condition of a river, stream, or lake includes gathering physical, chemical, biological, and habitat data. Comprehensive studies often gather all these parameters in great detail, while lighter assessment events will involve sampling physical, chemical and biological data such as macroinvertebrates. Aquatic macroinvertebrates and fish communities integrate watershed or catchment condition, providing great insight into overall ecosystem health. Chemical and habitat parameters tell researchers more about human induced problems including contaminated runoff, point source dischargers, or habitat issues that foster or limit the potential of aquatic communities to thrive in a given area. Wisconsin's Water Monitoring Strategy was recenty updated.
Grants and Management Projects
|Project Name (Click for Details)||Year Started|
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
Pike Lake is located in the Rubicon River watershed which is 79.15 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily agricultural (45.10%), grassland (19.90%) and a mix of wetland (13.40%) and other uses (21.60%). This watershed has 127.08 stream miles, 592.86 lake acres and 6,453.66 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, Not Ranked for runoff impacts on lakes and High for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of High. This value can be used in ranking the watershed or individual waterbodies for grant funding under state and county programs.However, all waters are affected by diffuse pollutant sources regardless of initial water quality. Applications for specific runoff projects under state or county grant programs may be pursued. For more information, go to surface water program grants.