Once again, the days grow longer, the air gets warmer, and you’re ready to finally get out on the lake after a long winter. But whether you’re a longtime boating enthusiast or a newbie to the Chain-o-Lakes scene, you might be wondering—what else is there to do on Fox Lake, aside from the obvious jet-skiing and fishing? Here are just a few ideas to get your spring started.

Pub Crawls

The Chain-o-Lakes is home to quite a few lakeside pubs and bars and it doesn’t take a genius to realize the potential. Blueberry Hill, Captain’s Quarters, and Blarney Island (to name just a few) have convenient docking and are extremely welcoming to boaters. Fun On The Fox even has a handy list they’ve compiled of boat-friendly bars and restaurants, searchable by city or water location, so if you have a boat, or even just rent a pontoon (and have a designated driver of course), you and your friends can spend a night hopping between these waterside establishments, sampling all the different drinks and vibes to be found on the lake. A brew, a view, and a breeze—the lake as it’s meant to be experienced.

Boat Runspier-by-captain-rods-boat-lift-and-pier-services

Ever been driving and seen a massive stream of motorcyclists go by? This is the boating equivalent. Boaters cruise through a course charted across a stretch of lakes, hitting checkpoints along the way and celebrating at the end. Local boating clubs often organize poker runs, wherein each participant draws a playing card at each checkpoint, and then whoever has the best hand at the end wins. Others, such as the Thunder Run hosted by the Northern Illinois Offshore Club, raise money for charity. For anyone with a powerboat or anyone who just wants to see a lot of boats speeding by from the comfort of the shoreline, runs are a great opportunity.

Bow Fishing

One look at Fox Lake and your first thought is “I want to fish in that.” But have you ever gone fishing with a bow? With a current Illinois fishing license and the restriction of rough fish only, you can legally fish with bow and arrows from shore or boat. For anyone who doesn’t have the patience to sit and wait for the fish to bite, this is a fun alternative that they may find worth looking into.

These are some of our suggestions but everyone has their own way to enjoy their time on the lake. There’s certainly enough room on the Chain for it all. Maybe we’ve given you a few of your own ideas, and maybe you’ll think of us when you’re out on the water.