Jordan Lake, Wisconsin, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - Midwest - Wisconsin - Central Sands Prairie Region -

Also known as:  Lake Jordan. Long Lake (historical)

Jordan Lake is a 213-acre residential lake in Wisconsin’s Central Sands Prairie Region, just 15 miles from the famous Wisconsin Dells. Once called Long Lake, Jordan Lake invites residents and visitors to relax, fish, and enjoy their favorite water sports. Eagles, sand hill cranes, ducks and other wildlife make Jordan Lake their home. A tribute to the lake’s long-lasting attractions, nearly half of its residents have owned there for over 10 years. New condos are opening up additional space for new arrivals, and a large number of cottages are seasonal homes of mid-western summer residents.

Jordan Lake has no inflowing or outflowing streams. All of its water is gained from precipitation, seeping groundwater and surface run-off. The water is clear, and water quality remains very good. Areas along the shore are quite shallow, but a couple of deep holes reach depths of over 90 feet. The western portions of the shoreline are quite heavily developed for housing, but the eastern end of the lake is forested and in private hands, allowing for a variety of wildlife to flourish. Bald eagles and sand hill cranes regularly nest near the lake.

A public boat launch at the western end of the lake, operated by Adams County Parks, provides public access. Recent efforts at enforcing the 200-foot no-wake zone from the shore and imposing no-wake hours from 8:30 PM to 11:00 AM calm the water’s surface considerably, allowing for a more serene landscape for human and wildlife residents. Pontoon boats are the more leisurely method of lake transportation among most local property owners. Additionally, a group of area residents have formed an association to identify and prevent potential water quality problems from occurring in the future.

The group, titled the Jordan Lake Rehabilitation and Protection District, has facilitated a series of water quality studies to be performed and created a lake management plan based on the results. To address the few invasive species problems in existence, spot treatment plans treat specific areas for such aquatic threats as Eurasian milfoil. Volunteers at the public boat ramp educate boating visitors and watch for problem vegetation clinging to incoming boats. Recommendations for buffer zones and habitat improvement have been provided to lakefront property owners, and future development will be strictly controlled to meet best-practice standards. Because existing wetlands around the shoreline are small, scattered and endangered, suggestions for improving shoreline habitat and wetland preservation have been provided to all property owners. Implementation of preventative practices will assure that Jordan Lake’s water quality and wildlife habitat remain good into the future.

Fishing is good at Jordan Lake. Previously the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) stocked some game fish species but isn’t currently doing so. Fish stocks are adequate and healthy, however. Panfish such as bluegill are most numerous with largemouth bass, northern pike and walleye also commonly caught. Ice fishing and other winter sports are popular. Adams County supports a large network of snowmobile and cross-country skiing trails, while a network of ATV-focused trails entertains the motorized 4-wheeler fans.

Numerous small lakes surround Jordan Lake. These small lakes are often a focus of fishermen and have public boat launching facilities-some by county permit only. Some of these small lakes also contain campgrounds. The Town of Jackson surrounds Jordan Lake; this rural community consists mostly of small pockets of homes, with many in the Jordan Lake vicinity. A restaurant and bar are located near the public boat launch at the west end of the lake. Other groceries and services are found in the villages and larger towns in the surrounding area.

Adams County holds a number of larger and better-known recreational venues, including Castle Rock and Petenwell County Parks on the Wisconsin River. Both large parks provide camping opportunities, boat launching facilities, hiking trails and picnic facilities. Jordan Lake is only 15 miles from the well-known Wisconsin Dells area which provides a large choice of lodgings, water parks, water-based activities and resort facilities. These areas all hold unusual rock formations that draw the eye of photographers. Most lodgings are centered along the Wisconsin River or the Dells area along I-90. With the Wisconsin River forming the western boundary of Adams County, the entire area is a vacation hotspot for tourism. Several small motels and bed-and-breakfasts are located along the roads close to the river.

Its proximity to larger recreational facilities and the short drive from either Madison (65 miles) or Milwaukee (125 miles) keeps Jordan Lake an attractive location for weekend and summer homes. A number of those summer residents retire to live here year-round. There are occasionally private lakefront homes for rent for short periods, allowing visitors a rare opportunity to enjoy Jordan lakefront vacations. And real estate on the lake can often be found, usually in the form of either existing homes, condos or buildable access lots. Jordan Lake remains a relatively quiet residential lake-which suits residents perfectly. Come see if Jordan Lake is the place for your family.

Things to do at Jordan Lake WI

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Snowmobiling
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding

Fish species found at Jordan Lake WI

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Northern Pike
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Sunfish
  • Walleye

Jordan Lake WI Photo Gallery

Jordan Lake WI Statistics & Helpful Links

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Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Not Dammed

Surface Area: 213 acres

Shoreline Length: 3 miles

Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 905 feet

Maximum Depth: 92 feet

Drainage Area: 7 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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