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Glacier Lake (Clark Reservation State Park)

Glacier Lake (formerly known as Green Lake) is a small, deep water body located in Clark Reservation State Park near the Town of DeWitt, Onondaga County. Glacier Lake is often referred to as a glacial plunge pool lake. Plunge pool lakes are usually small (surface area) deep lakes. It's believed that Glacier Lake was formed by water melting off the top of a glacier, like a giant water fall. The force of this water fall tumbling off the glacier scoured a hole in the limestone creating Glacier Lake.

Physical Features:

Elevation: 1,700 feet
Area: 5 acres
Shoreline length: 0.5 miles
Length: 0.16 miles
Maximum Depth: 65 feet
Town: DeWitt

Aquatic Plant Life:

Little rooted aquatic vegetation found in the lake.

Access:

Clark Reservation State Park- To access the lake you must descend 175 feet down a rock staircase. No boats are allowed on the lake. For more information contact Clark Reservation State Park at (315) 492-1590 or click on their link under links leaving DEC's website in the right column.

Fish Species:

Walleye, chain pickerel, pumpkinseed sunfish, and golden shiner.

Fishing:

It's a long walk down a stone staircase, so leave the big tackle boxes at home and carry a small one with limited tackle.

Regulations:

Statewide fishing regulations apply (leaving DEC website to official Fishing Regulations Guide vendor website).

Fisheries Management:

Glacier Lake is stocked annually with approximately 20,000 walleye fry.

Fish Survey Report (2009)

In order to determine the fate of a long standing walleye fry stocking policy in Glacier Lake, located in Clark Reservation State Park, Biologist Dave Lemon worked with NYS Parks Biologist Tom Hughes and SUNY ESF personnel to conduct a survey of the 10 acre pond's fish community. NYSDEC fish sampling was last conducted in 1949 and no information on the success of the walleye fry stocking was known. The long gap in sampling effort was undoubtedly a result of the challenging physical setting of the pond. Glacier Lake is located in a 165 ft deep gorge, created by a waterfall within a temporary river channel of the receding glacier. As a result, getting canoe and sampling gear down (and back up) the nearly 180 steps to the pond required the assistance of a number of youth who were working in a SUNY ESF summer work program.

Results of the sampling were quite surprising with a total of six walleye captured in three, overnight gillnet sets. Sizes of the walleye ranged from 11.9 to 18.7 inches with four different age classes represented. In addition, seven large chain pickerel (16.9 - 19.6 in.) and eight large pumpkinseed sunfish (over 7.7 in.) were also captured along with numerous medium sized golden shiners and smaller pumpkinseed sunfish. As an added bonus, all the fish were taken by ESF researchers to test for the level of mercury contamination in their tissue. Recent testing of the pond's bottom sediments by ESF Professor Dr. Charles Driscoll revealed elevated mercury levels in the sediments and a nearby county incinerator has been suggested as the possible reason. Tissue analysis of the fish will provide us valuable information on the potential health risk, if any, of eating the ponds fish.

Overall there appears to be good balance of predators and prey in the pond, and the contribution of walleye from our stocking program is almost certainly part of the reason. Continuation of the walleye fry stocking program will be recommended based on the results of this survey.


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