Maximum depth (feet): 67 feet
Mean depth (feet): 25 feet
Watershed acres: 11,737 acres
Lake size: 891 acres
Named for the eagles that were found around the area of the lake; Eagle Lake is located in Kandiyohi County, about one mile north of Willmar, Minnesota. It is classified by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MN DNR) as a Class 27 lake. Lakes in Class 27 are relatively large productive, hard water lakes. (MPCA LAP, 1994). The lake identification number of Eagle Lake is 34-0171. Eagle Lake is split between two townships; Dovre and Green Lake. Its legal description is Kandiyohi County, Township 120 North, Range 35 West, Sections 24 and 25, and Township 120 North, Range 34 West, Sections 19 and 30. In 1967 there were 62 seasonal residences, and 110 permanent residences for a total of 172 residences. In 1982 there were 62 seasonal residences, and 216 permanents residences for a total of 278 residences. As of 1995, residential development of 275 homes/cabins had occurred around the entire shoreline area with the exception of the northeast portion of the lake. There are currently approximately 283 homes as of 2012 on Eagle Lake.
A watershed can be defined as an area of land above a specific location from which all water drains to that location. Eagle Lake lies within the larger Hawk Creek watershed. Where the specific location of the receiving waters is a lake, the watershed is sometimes referred to as a lakeshed. The lakeshed of Eagle Lake is 11,737 total acres including the 891 acres of Eagle Lake. The average depth of the lake is 25 feet, with a maximum depth of 67 feet. The littoral area, (15 feet or less in depth of Eagle Lake), is 274 acres, which is 33% of the total lake. Eagle Lakes fetch is approximately two miles. Eagle Lake has approximately 5 miles of shoreline and there are two lakes and numerous wetlands within the watershed area of Eagle Lake. The estimated average water residence time of the lake is four to five years. There are three primary inlets to Eagle Lake and only one outlet, which is the start of Hawk Creek. Both inlets on the eastern side run through a series of wetlands.
Eagle Lake is near the beginning or headwaters of the Hawk Creek Watershed, the lakes outlet is the beginning of Hawk Creek. The Hawk Creek Watershed is characterized by a gently twisting till plain formed during the advance of the Des Moines Lobe. Elevations generally range from 1,070 to 1,130 feet above sea level within the watershed. The lowest point within Kandiyohi County is found near the area where Chetomba Creek exits the County to the south. The elevation of this point within the watershed is 1,060 feet above sea level (Kandiyohi County Water Plan, 2003).
North Central Hardwood Forest Ecoregion
A lakes watershed determines the ecoregion it’s in. There are 7 different ecoregions in Minnesota. Eagle Lake is in the North Central Hardwood Forest Ecoregion. This ecoregion is an area of transition between the forested areas to the north and east and the agricultural areas to the south and west. The terrain varies from rolling hills to smaller plains. Upland areas are forested by hardwoods and conifers. Plains include livestock pastures, hay fields and row crops such as potatoes, beans, peas and corn. The ecoregion contains many lakes, and water clarity and nutrient levels are moderate. Land surrounding many of these lakes has been developed for housing and recreation, and the densely populated metropolitan area dominates the eastern portion of this region. Water quality problems that face many of the water bodies in this area are associated with contaminated runoff from paved surfaces and lawns.