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Big Muskego Lake - Durham Access


  1. Restroom/Portable
Lake Profile
Big Muskego Lake is a shallow 2,260-acre flow-through lake fringed with cattail-dominated wetlands and encompassing numerous islands of cattail marsh. Most of Big Muskego Lake is less than four feet deep with generally an organic or "muck" bottom.

Bass Bay is a 100-acre connected embayment of Big Muskego Lake that has a deeper basin typical of other glacially formed "kettle lakes" in the region. Bass Bay has a maximum depth of 23 feet and has a bottom substrate of predominantly muck with some isolated sandy shoreline areas.

Between 1995 and 1997 a nationally-recognized lake restoration effort was undertaken on Big Muskego Lake and Bass Bay. The project resulted in dramatically improved water quality and enhanced fish and wildlife habitat. Prior to the project the lake was a turbid, carp-dominated, open expanse of shallow water. After a full year drawdown and eradication of rough fish, the lake shifted to a marsh/shallow lake complex with improved water quality.

The clearer water supports a quality fishery that includes panfish, northern pike, and largemouth bass. Increased plant coverage and diversity has improved waterfowl nesting habitat and production. Greater usage by migrating ducks and geese has translated into improved hunting success. Wildlife viewing opportunities have increased with non-game species such as Ospreys, Bald Eagles, Forster's Terns, and Yellow Headed Blackbirds more commonly seen in the enhanced habitat.

Acquired in 1994, Completed in 1998

This nine-acre site located on the northern shore of Big Muskego Lake in the eastcentral portion of the city provides a public-owned access to Big Muskego Lake/Bass Bay. The site provides:
  • a launching ramp
  • portable rest room

There is an associated one-acre site 600 feet to the southwest on Durham Drive that provides additional parking. Collectively, there is off-street parking available for 42 vehicles, including 32 car/trailer spaces.

Durham Launch dock