Onondaga Lake is located in Central New York along the edge of the City of Syracuse. The lake covers 4.6 square miles, has an average depth of 35 feet and a maximum depth of 63 feet. It is approximately one mile wide and 4.6 miles long. The lake receives water from a 285-square mile watershed located mostly in Onondaga County (the southern tip of the watershed extends into northern Cortland County).
In the 19th century, Onondaga Lake was a popular tourist attraction, with beaches, resorts and amusement parks. Over time, industrial development and a growing population led to increases in sewage and industrial discharges that took their toll on the water quality of Onondaga Lake. Swimming was banned by 1940 and fishing in 1970.
Because of pollution control efforts (which began in the 1970s) and more recent cleanup work, the lake is now the cleanest it has been in over 100 years. The lake reopened to fishing in 1986 (with consumption advisories) and over 65 species of fish have been documented in the lake. The ongoing revitalization of Onondaga Lake has exceeded the expectations of many. Onondaga Lake is quickly becoming one of the best bass fisheries in NY. Onondaga Lake is home to a very healthy population of Largemouth bass, with many reports of catches over five pounds. Onondaga lake have a very large population of smallmouth bass in its waters as well, while the size may not be as large as other lakes in NY the numbers that can be caught makes for an amazing trip. Throw in the bonous catch of on one of Onondaga lakes tiger muskys and this will e a trip you talk about for a long time!!!!