Sunday, September 6, 2015

Kayaking Busse Reservoir

Busse Reservoir is located in Ned Brown Forest Preserve, also known as Busse Woods (3558 acres in size) south of Golf Road (Route 58) between I-290 and Arlington Heights Road, near the suburbs of Elk Grove Village and Schaumburg. Canoe and rowboat rentals are available in season. Higgins Road (Route 72) bisects the preserve.

Busse Reservoir has a total area of 590 acres with 20 miles of shoreline. Three separate "pools" exist. The main pool (419 acres) and the south pool (146 acres) have boat launches and allow sailboats, rowboats, kayaks, and canoes. The north pool (25 acres) is shore fishing only. The islands are bird sanctuaries and are home to numerous great blue heron and white egrets. Water depths range up to 14 feet.


The reservoir is part of the Salt Creek flood prevention program and is the largest of several reservoirs. The entire forest preserve has numerous recreational opportunities and gets heavy usage. Make sure your boat registration is up-to-date as they sometimes check.


The launch area has two ramps, although I often use the gravel shore instead. Maps of the lake and its islands are available on the Forest Preserve District of Cook County website, or you can just explore on your own. Boat rentals are available in this area.


Galyans was sponsoring their "Paddle in the Park" the day the photo below was taken, and had a plethora of watercraft available for potential customers to try. Unfortunately the cool, windy weather left many boats unused.

This map shows the layout of the lake (click to enlarge.).  A downloadable PDF of this map is available at the Forest Preserve District of Cook County website. The red and black lines are the bike trails available, and the blue shows the various bays, all of which are available to boaters.


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