Deep Lake, Illinois, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - Midwest - Illinois - Chicagoland -

Even in a county with hundreds of lakes, Deep Lake stands out. Located in Lake County, in the Chicagoland Region of Illinois, private Deep Lake is noted as one of the cleanest, clearest lakes in the watershed. The lake lies only 50 miles north of the Chicago Loop and just five miles east of the Fox River Chain of Lakes. This proximity to the city has made the area around Deep Lake and the Village of Lake Villa a choice location for commuters. Here at Deep Lake, the lakelubbers can have the best of both worlds at their fingertips.

One of a series of glacial pothole lakes sprinkled across the northern Illinois prairie, Deep Lake became a recreational destination in the early days of resort hotels. Records show resort properties being developed here as early as 1880. The village of Lake Villa was incorporated in 1901 on the narrow strip of land between Deep and Cedar lakes. By this time, a community of affluent property owners had already built elaborate mansions in the area. The famed department store pioneer, E.J. Lehmann influenced development and convinced the Wisconsin Central Railroad to include a stop at Lake Villa. The depot soon saw up to 18 trains a day bringing resort visitors and taking businessmen to Chicago. The exclusive nature of many early property owners likely prevented over-development of the lakeshore: today, only about 50% of the shoreline is developed. The rest is encompassed within the Sun Lake Forest Preserve along the north and west sides of the lake.

Deep Lake is an all-sports lake. Residents and their visitors enjoy water skiing, pontooning, jet skis, tubing, wake-boarding, sailing, canoeing and kayaking. Property owners are allowed to have their own docks, giving exclusive access nearly at one’s doorstep. The village of Lake Villa maintains a small boat ramp and swimming beach, open to village residents, on Deep Lake’s south shore. Here off-lake residents may obtain a key to the gate where they may launch boats with motors under 10hp for a day on the lake. There is no overnight docking available at the park. The only other public access to the lake is via a small fishing resort on the eastern shore that rents cabins and boats, sells bait, allows paid access and acts as the headquarters for anglers visiting the lake. Deep Lake offers a good supply of largemouth bass and bluegill, along with northern pike, crappie, bullhead, perch and carp. Because of the presence of two relatively rare minnows, the lake is rarely stocked with larger game fish. However, the lake provides its own self-sustaining fishery, and fishing is considered very good. The wooded shoreline and large percentage of preserve land gives one the feeling of a far-north fishing lake. It is easy here to forget one’s proximity to civilization and the large cities only an hour away.

Visitors to Deep Lake will never be at loose ends for something to do: the quiet coves and wooded lakeshore harbor a surprising variety of birds, waterfowl and mammals-a great spot for canoeing or kayaking with a camera and binoculars. Local roads along the shoreline are great for leisurely strolls and cycling. Sun Lake Forest Preserve offers over three miles of trails for hiking, mountain biking and cross-country skiing. Several restaurants are located near the lake, including one at the fishing resort. A former country club turned exclusive hotel/conference center on the southeast shore offers fine dining. And Lake Villa provides a full complement of restaurants, shops, services and amusements for both daily activities and evening entertainment such as movies, pizza parlors, hardware and neighborhood taverns. Several golf courses are within a five mile radius.

Nearby Fox River Chain of Lakes provides facilities and space for larger boats. Marinas along the many lakes there can provide boat docking and storage for the ‘big boat’ aficionado only five minuets from Deep Lake. Illinois Beach State Park is only 15 miles to the east and offers miles of sandy beach, Great Lakes breezes and a marina. Both Waukegan and Kenosha, Wisconsin are within a half-hour’s drive, providing eclectic shops, arts venues and unique nightlife. Youngsters and the young at heart will thrill to the roller coasters at the world-famous amusement park located at Gurnee. Also within a half-hour drive, several forest, nature and bog preserves offer ample opportunities to engage in bird and wildlife watching. Most have groomed trails, interpretive facilities and often, rangers to guide and educate visitors.

Private vacation rentals are not common on Deep Lake. Some few rentals do exist in the form of townhouses and condos near the lake. Those looking for real estate may find the perfect property with lake frontage. These are quickly snapped up by the wise purchaser. Commuting to Chicago is simple from Lake Villa, with trains departing as often as every 15 minutes during peak hours. This easy commute makes Deep Lake once again accessible to those who work in the city and thus a highly desirable location. Nothing could be more inviting after a hot day in the city than to sit on the deck gazing across the peaceful lake to the wooded shoreline beyond. Won’t you come to Deep Lake and discover what’s been missing in your world?

Things to do at Deep Lake IL

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Jet Skiing
  • Water Skiing
  • Tubing
  • Golf
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • State Park
  • Amusement Park

Fish species found at Deep Lake IL

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Carp
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Northern Pike
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Sunfish

Deep Lake IL Photo Gallery

    Deep Lake IL Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Not Dammed

    Surface Area: 226 acres

    Shoreline Length: 3 miles

    Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 777 feet

    Average Depth: 17 feet

    Maximum Depth: 48 feet

    Water Volume: 3,955 acre-feet

    Drainage Area: 1 sq. miles

    Trophic State: Mesotrophic

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

    You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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