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Whalon Lake

Preserve History

The 249-acre Whalon Lake was acquired between 1992 and 2007.

The preserve is part of the DuPage River preservation system, which conserves more than 1,500 acres.

Prior to the District's acquisition of the land, the portion of the preserve that is now a lake was created and used as a quarry.



Natural Resources

Whalon Lake protects a diversity of habitats, including prairie, wetland, an 80-acre lake and a portion of the DuPage River.

Wildlife found at the preserve includes a variety of waterfowl, such as ducks.

The preserve is also home to a variety of plant species, including red mulberry and wild leek.

The site is managed with community restoration to protect and enhance its natural resources. Learn more about the District’s land management activities.

Amenities and Activities


Whalon Lake provides access to a 3.71-mile, paved segment of the DuPage River Trail, ideal for the following activities:

  • Biking
  • Hiking/Running
  • In-Line Skating
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Snowshoeing

Dog Exercising

The preserve features a fenced 11.9-acre off-leash dog park, including a 1.9-acre pen exclusively for dogs under 35 pounds. A permit is required for dog park use. Learn more about the District’s dog parks, permits, and fees.


The preserve offers two picnic shelters for rental: Konicek Grove Shelter (permit capacity of 50 people) and Lakeside Shelter (permit capacity of 150 people). Learn more about picnic permits and fees.


The preserve offers access to shoreline fishing on its 80-acre lake. The lake is stocked with bluegill, black crappie, largemouth bass, channel catfish and walleye.


Catch-and-release fishing is encouraged, but daily limits are:

Learn more about fishing in the forest preserves.


The preserve features a canoe/kayak launch on the lake. No launch pass is required. Learn more about canoeing/kayaking in the forest preserves.

Starting with the 2019 season, a kayak rental program is being offered by Naperville Kayak, which obtained a concessions license with the District. A maximum of 30 rented kayaks will be allowed at one time on the lake, which has an 80-watercraft limit. Private kayaks can still be launched on the lake.

Current costs and hours that rentals are available can be found on Naperville Kayak's website.


The preserve provides trailer parking and a boat launch on the lake for small fishing boats, and there is no launch fee or District permit required. State and District regulations apply. Learn more about boating in the forest preserves.


Permits are available for geocaching at this preserve. Learn more about geocaching permits.


Whalon Lake is located on Royce Road, west of Route 53/Bolingbrook Drive in Naperville.




6 a.m.-Sunset (April-October)
8 a.m.-Sunset (November-March)

On Social Media

Like the Whalon Lake Facebook page to get news updates, photos, videos and information about upcoming programs at this preserve.

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