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Wednesday, April 17, 2019

What are Wisconsin's Clearest Lakes?

What are the clearest lakes in Wisconsin?  Every year, I consult with Wisconsin's state-wide citizen's lake monitoring group. They're a network of individuals, usually lake-front property owners who monitor and regularly take a variety of water samples from lakes all across Wisconsin.  The data they compile helps to give us a look at how our lakes are doing. One of the many tasks lake monitors perform is to take regular sechi disc readings. This is a universal way of assessing and comparing water clarity.  I'm always interested in knowing which Wisconsin inland lakes are the clearest.  Here are the lakes that recorded the highest average water clarity in 2018. In short-here are Wisconsin's clearest inland lakes and their average water clarity in 2018:

1)   Lake Wazee, Jackson Co. 30.3 feet
2)   Whitefish Lake, Douglas Co.  27 feet
3)   Smoky Lake, Vilas Co. 26.7 feet
4)   Paya Lake, Oconto Co. 26.6 feet
5)   Black Oak Lake, Vilas Co. 26.5 feet
6)   Pine Lake, Waukesha Co. 25.5 feet
7)   Lake Metonga, Forest Co. 25.5 feet
8)   Presque Isle Lake, Vilas Co. 25 feet
9)   Mildred Lake, Oneida Co. 24.3 feet
10) Blue Lake, Oneida Co. 23.25 feet

To See the lake list from 2017, click here. To see the lake list from 2016, click here.To see the lake list from 2015, click here.  To see the lake list from 2014, click here.  For the lake list from 2013, click here.  And for the 2012 list of clear lakes, click here.


  1. Thanks Eric, great, helpful information! (Gonna try filming muskies up here in Oneida cty with a gopro tomorrow-per alot of your advice).

  2. This is a perfect time. Water temps are still cool but right now, muskies are in shallow water in pre-spawn mode in most of our northern lakes. On other warmer waters, the spawning has begun. I expect you'll be able to encounter them easily till at least Memorial Day.