Fish and Aquatic Life
Clear Lake, in the Manitowish River Watershed, is a 515.14 acre lake that falls in Vilas County. This lake is managed for fishing and swimming and is currently considered impaired for total phosphorus.
Author Aquatic Biologist
Source: 1963, Surface Water Resources of Vilas County Clear Lake, T-42-N, R-5-E, Sections 1 and 12,
A fertile spring-fed lake, Clear Lake has clear, slightly alkaline water of moderate transparency. Bottom materials consist of sand, muck and gravel. Walleyes are considered to be an abundant fish species in the lake; however, the lake is also fished for muskellunge to some degree. Crappies are also significant and of excellent quality. Access is possible by a town road with parking. There is also navigable water access as the lake is part of the Manitowish Chain. The lake has two resorts and boat rental facilities are also available. There are 25 cottages or dwellings on the lake at present. The lake retains a high aesthetic quality due in part to the large amount of state ownership. Approximately one-fourth of the shore line is presently held in state ownership.
Area = 51 Surface Acres, Maximum Depth = 39 feet
Author Surface Water Inventory Of Wisconsin
Clear Lake (2329000) was placed on the impaired waters list for total phosphorus in 2014. This water was assessed during the 2016 listing cycle; chlorophyll sample data were clearly below 2016 WisCALM listing thresholds for the Recreation use and Fish and Aquatic Life use. Total phosphorus data did not exceed REC or FAL thresholds. This water remains listed for total phosphorus because data were not clearly below listing thresholds.
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.
This project will complete a Smart Growth compliant plan for the Township of Manitowish Waters. Specifically, this grant will cover portions of the agricultural/natural resources/cultural, internal governmental, land use, and implementation strategy elements.
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
|WBIC||Official Waterbody Name||Station ID||Station Name||Earliest Fieldwork Date||Latest Fieldwork Date||View Station||View Data|
|2329000||Clear Lake||10018649||Clear Lake -- Access at W Side Of Lake Off Clear Lake Rd||6/24/2007||6/21/2022||Map||Data|
|2329000||Clear Lake||643415||Clear Lake - Deep Hole (42 05e 12)||6/21/1994||8/16/2018||Map||Data|
|2329000||Clear Lake||10019906||Clear Lake -- Access off Haskins Rd.||6/12/2009||6/15/2021||Map||Data|
|2329000||Clear Lake||10005964||Clear Lake (Vilas Co)||8/29/2000||6/15/2021||Map||Data|
Clear Lake is located in the Manitowish River watershed which is 268.60 mi². Land use in the watershed is primarily forest (66.90%), wetland (19.10%) and a mix of open (13.30%) and other uses (0.70%). This watershed has 212.08 stream miles, 22,943.16 lake acres and 33,727.48 wetland acres.
Nonpoint Source Characteristics
This watershed is ranked Low 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.