Wisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt, Little Eau Claire River Watershed (CW13)
Wisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt, Little Eau Claire River Watershed (CW13)
Wisconsin River (Bukolt Park Beach) (1409400)
0.07 Miles
0 - 0.07
Natural Community
Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model results that use predicted flow and temperature based on landscape features and related assumptions. Ranges of flow and temperature associated with specific aquatic life communities (fish, macroinvertebrates) help biologists identify appropriate resource management goals. Wisconsin Natural Communities.
Impounded Flowing Water
Year Last Monitored
This is the most recent date of monitoring data stored in SWIMS. Additional surveys for fish and habitat may be available subsequent to this date.
Trout Water 
Trout Waters are represented by Class I, Class II or Class III waters. These classes have specific ecological characteristics and management actions associated with them. For more information regarding Trout Classifications, see the Fisheries Trout Class Webpages.
Outstanding or Exceptional 
Wisconsin has designated many of the state's highest quality waters as Outstanding Resource Waters (ORWs) or Exceptional Resource Waters (ERWs). Waters designated as ORW or ERW are surface waters which provide outstanding recreational opportunities, support valuable fisheries and wildlife habitat, have good water quality, and are not significantly impacted by human activities. ORW and ERW status identifies waters that the State of Wisconsin has determined warrant additional protection from the effects of pollution. These designations are intended to meet federal Clean Water Act obligations requiring Wisconsin to adopt an 'antidegradation' policy that is designed to prevent any lowering of water quality - especially in those waters having significant ecological or cultural value.
Impaired Water 
A water is polluted or 'impaired' if it does not support full use by humans, wildlife, fish and other aquatic life and it is shown that one or more of the pollutant criteria are not met.

Fish and Aquatic Life

Current Use
The use the water currently supports. This is not a designation or classification; it is based on the current condition of the water. Information in this column is not designed for, and should not be used for, regulatory purposes.
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
Attainable Use
The use that the investigator believes the water could achieve through managing "controllable" sources. Beaver dams, hydroelectric dams, low gradient streams, and naturally occurring low flows are generally not considered controllable. The attainable use may be the same as the current use or it may be higher.
Fish and Aquatic Life - waters that do not have a specific use designation subcategory assigned but which are considered fishable, swimmable waters.
Designated Use
This is the water classification legally recognized by NR102 and NR104, Wis. Adm. Code. The classification determines water quality criteria and effluent limits. Waters obtain designated uses through classification procedures.
Default FAL
Fish and Aquatic Life - Default Waters do not have a specific use designation subcategory but are considered fishable, swimmable waters.


The Wisconsin River Flowages in Portage County are a series of three impoundments on the Wisconsin River used to generate power for papermills. In this report they will be numbered one through three, with number one southern most, number two in the center, and number three the farthest north. All three contain turbid, dark brown soft water.

Wisconsin River Flowage Number 1 is the smallest and most shallow of the flowages. It is 57 acres in size and has a maximum depth of six feet. Sand, silt, and rubble are the predominant bottom materials, with some boulders present. The dam is known as the Whiting-Plover dam, and it is owned by the Whiting-Plover Paper Corporation, which uses it to produce power. Developments consist of the mill, seven dwellings, and a county park. The park offers picnicking, grills, and toilets. There are no boat launching facilities.

Wisconsin River Flowage Number 2, formed by the Lower Stevens Point dam is both larger and deeper than number 1. It has a maximum depth of 25 feet near the dam and covers 220 surface acres. Sand, silt, and a little gravel comprise the bottom materials. The dam is owned and maintained by the Consolidated Paper Corporation. The paper mill, seven dwellings, and a county park are present. Grills, picnic tables, and toilets are present in the park. There are no boat launching facilities.

Wisconsin River Flowage Number 3, formed by the Stevens Point dam, is the largest. It covers 2,093 acres, and is 25 feet deep near the dam which is owned by the Consolidated Paper Corporation. This impoundment is shallow at the upper end. Many bayous and backwater regions are present at the upper end which is relatively wild and undeveloped. Sand and silt are the bottom materials. A large number of developments are present on the lower end as the City of Stevens Point adjoins the water. Three city parks are located on the Flowage. Mead Park offers swimming, changehouse, picnic tables, playground, and tennis courts. Bukolt Park has playground, picnic area, bathhouse, swimming beach, boat launching ramp, and large parking area. The third, Pfieffer Park, has a small parking area, resting benches, and a tourist information booth.

The fishery of all three is the same; northern pike, walleye, bullheads, carp, white sucker, and redhorse are the most common. Perch, largemouth bass, bluegills, black crappie, rock bass, pumpkinseed, bowfin, and burbot are also present. Presence of mercury in Wisconsin River fish has been noted and consumption is presently restricted due to the high levels of mercury they contain. Further discussion of pollution will be done in another section. Although partially developed, much of the shoreline is in a wild state. Deer, grouse, muskrats, many species of waterfowl, and birds of all kinds abound, especially in the backwater regions of Flowage Number 3.

The recreational use of these flowages in the past have been quite large. Hunting, fishing, all water sports, camping, and sightseeing are among the uses. The long standing abuse of these waters has seriously lowered their quality and threatens to destroy their potential for furnishing the high quality recreation expected from a surface water resource of this magnitude.

Source: 1972, Surface Water Resources of Portage County Wisconsin River Flowages, T23, 24N, R8E, Sections--Many, Surface Acres-2,370, Maximum Depth-25 feet

Date  1972

Author   Aquatic Biologist

Wisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt, Little Eau Claire River Watershed (CW13) Fish and Aquatic LifeWisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt, Little Eau Claire River Watershed (CW13) RecreationWisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt, Little Eau Claire River Watershed (CW13) Fish Consumption


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.


Management Goals

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

Monitoring Projects

Watershed Characteristics

Wisconsin R Fl C3-Stevens Pt is located in the Little Eau Claire River watershed which is 126.97 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (51.70%), wetland (21.50%) and a mix of agricultural (8.30%) and other uses (18.50%). This watershed has stream miles, lake acres and 20,363.86 wetland acres.

Nonpoint Source Characteristics

This watershed is ranked Medium for runoff impacts on streams, Low for runoff impacts on lakes and Low for runoff impacts on groundwater and therefore has an overall rank of Low. 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.

Natural Community

Wisconsin River (Bukolt Park Beach) is considered a Impounded Flowing Water under the state's Natural Community Determinations.

Natural communities (stream and lake natural communities) represent model resultsand DNR staff valiation processes that confirm or update predicted conditions based on flow and temperature modeling from historic and current landscape features and related variables. Predicated flow and temperatures for waters are associated predicated fish assemblages (communities). Biologists evaluate the model results against current survey data to determine if the modeled results are corect and whether biological indicators show water quaity degradation. This analysis is a core component of the state's resource management framework. Wisconsin's Riverine Natural Communities.

This classification includes waterbodies created by dams (mill ponds, reservoirs, flowages, and other impoundments) with a residence time of 14 days or more (under summer (June – Sept) mean low flow conditions with a 1 in 10 year recurrence interval (US EPA 2000)). Many natural lakes also have dams or water level control structures. However, to be included in the Impounded Flowing Waters category, the dam or water level control structure, must account for more than half of a waterbody’s maximum depth. Impoundments with a residence time of less than 14 days should be covered under the rivers and stream assessment methodology process.