Clinton Lake (Illinois)

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Clinton Lake
Clinton Lake Spillway.jpg
Clinton Lake dam spillway
Location DeWitt County, Illinois
Coordinates 40°08′20″N 88°52′35″W / 40.138925°N 88.876466°W / 40.138925; -88.876466Coordinates: 40°08′20″N 88°52′35″W / 40.138925°N 88.876466°W / 40.138925; -88.876466
Type Reservoir
Primary inflows Salt Creek
North Fork of Salt Creek
Primary outflows Salt Creek
Basin countries United States
Surface area 4,900 acres (19.8 km2)
Average depth 19.5 ft (5.9 m)
Max. depth 48 ft (14.6 m)
Residence time 6 months
Shore length1 219 km (136.1 mi)
Surface elevation 690 ft (210.3 m)
Settlements Clinton
1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.

Clinton Lake is a 4,900 acres (19.8 km2) reservoir located near Clinton, Illinois. The lake is a part of the Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, which encompasses 9,300 acres (37.6 km2). Clinton Lake is located in the central part of the state. It was built in the 1970s as a cooling source for Clinton Nuclear Generating Station. The lake opened in 1978. Clinton Lake is one of the best lakes for catfish, and other gamefish. Boating power is unrestricted on the main body of the lake, and the upper arm of the lake is reserved as a no-wake area and some limited areas are reserved for electric trolling motors. There are six boat launches on the lake, as well as one canoe launch. There is also a 1,000 ft (300 m) long white sand beach on the lake. Other activities at Clinton Lake include camping, boating, swimming, water skiing, fishing, hiking trails, pickniking, hunting, and winter sports. [1]

The various access and public use areas around Clinton Lake are collectively known as Clinton Lake State Recreation Area. Although fishing and other water sport activities have been the main attraction at this site, a diversity of other recreational activities are provided as well. Hunting (by permit only), camping, picknicking, hiking and cross country ski facilities are also available. Snowmobiling is allowed if conditions are favorable. Horse owners may also make use of an equestrian trail.

Clinton Lake is less than a 4 hour drive from Chicago and St. Louis. It is approximately 30 miles from, and centrally located between, the cities of Champaign, Bloomington, Decatur and Lincoln. Access from the north or south is facilitated by Interstates 57 and 55 as well as U.S. 51, which passes within 10 miles of the lake. Interstates 72 and 74 provide access from the east or west. Illinois Route 10, 54 and 48 provide a direct route to the lake.

The sport fish community of Clinton Lake is composed of fishes common to central Illinois reservoirs: largemouth bass, bluegill, white crappie, black crappie, channel catfish, bullheads, flathead catfish, walleye, striped bass and hybrid striped bass.

The Marina is located on the south shoreline of the Salt Creek area of Clinton Lake, between the towns of Lane and Weldon, and is accessible from Illinois Route 10 or DeWitt County Highway 14. (Information taken from the "Illinois Department of Natural Resource's CLINTON LAKE ACCESS AREAS AND FISHING GUIDE" by Gary Lutterbie, March 2006)

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