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Lake Information

County: Cook

Acreage: 380

Average Depth: 5.91 feet

Shoreline Length: 8.2 miles

Recreational Amenities

Boat Fishing? Unrestricted

Boat Ramps? Yes

Boat Rental? Yes

Skiing? No

Swimming? No

Picnicking? Yes

Camping? No

  Trout stocked in fall

  Trout stocked in spring

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There are zebra mussels in this lake.

Lake Status Summary  ( Full PDF Report )

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Fish Status



In 2012 sampling, fish measured from 3.2" to 8.2" and weighed up to 0.46 lbs. Fishermen report nice size fish.



In 2012, 15% of the bluegill captured exceeded 6" long. They ranged from 2" to 7.9", the largest weighing 0.48 lbs. Abundant aquatic vegetation provides hiding cover and reduces predator efficiency, but since the lake includes some E&T pondweed species, it's a balancing act between managing vegetation and protecting listed species.



This species is stocked every year at 8" to 10" to enhance shorefishing opportunities. In 2013, channel catfish collected as part of a supplemental survey weighed up to 4.6 lbs.


Very Good

In 2012 sampling, fish measured 7" to 19" and weighed up to 3.6 lbs.; 68% were greater than 12" long (sexually mature) and 30% were over 14" (legal size). This size structure creates high reproductive potential to maintain the population and manages for larger panfish.



Wolf Lake a good match for northern pike as the lake is shallow, is well vegetated and has clear water. Fishermen report fish up to 20 lbs.; we typically collect fish from 22" to 28" long. If hybrid muskie are caught, they are downstream migrants from Indiana's portion of Wolf Lake. Illinois has not stocked tiger muskie (hybrids) in Wolf Lake since the low 1990s.

Location: Wolf Lake is located southeast of Chicago, east of Avenue "O" at 130th Street in the Hegwisch neighborhood.

Description: Prior to 1947 Wolf Lake was a small, shallow glacial lake situated in a wetland area between the confluence of the Grand Calumet and Calumet Rivers. Since that time however, the construction of a low level dam and levees from extensive dredging operations have changed the lake's appearance. The lake and it's fishery have developed into a haven for anglers to enjoy some quiet time away from the highly urbanized vicinity and catch quality-sized fish. The lake is located on the Illinois and Indiana state line. The Illinois portion of Wolf Lake consists of 390 of the acres of water and is managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Fishing ranks as one of the most popular recreational activities at William Powers. The maximum depth of Wolf Lake is 15 feet and the average depth is 5 feet. There are 3 developed boat ramps in the Park, but no concession or fish cleaning facilities available.

History and Status of the Sport Fishery: The last survey was 4/26/2012 evaluating the fisheries in NW Pool and Stateline Pool; at that time, two gallons of Reward were applied in the Office Lagoon to manage Eurasian milfoil and lily pads. in 2013, the IEPA requested fish flesh contaminant samples as part their Statewide monitoring program. Wolf Lake receives annual stockings of predator sport fish: 12,000 8" to 10" channel catfish, 4500 2" smallmouth bass, 1200 8" northern pike, and 15,000 2" walleye.

Additional Lake Information: Fishing access is reduced during the waterfowl hunting season. Boat fishing is allowed; boats with motors larger than 10 hp must remain at "no wake". Rental boats are available from the park concessionaire. Swimming and wading are prohibited. Two pole and line fishing only. The park is open sunrise to sunset.

Contact Information:
William W. Powers Conservation Area
IDNR Fisheries Biologist, Frank Jakubicek