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JE Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area

J.E. Roush Lake
517 N. Warren Road
Huntington, IN 46750
260-468-2165
Office Hours: M-F, 7 a.m. - 3 p.m. ET
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J.E. Roush Lake FWA advisories

  • J.E. Roush Lake FWA contains a reservoir that frequently experiences flooding when the property undergoes extensive rain in a short period of time. Recreational areas such as the campground, boat ramp, and some roads may be closed during spring flooding season. Contact the property for the most up-to-date closure information at 260-468-2165.
  • Properties are continuing to operate hunt and trap draws differently due to COVID-19. View the property procedures.
  • All visitors must obtain a one-day access permit before entering the field, regardless of their activity. Visitors must keep their one-day access permit on them while visiting and must complete and return their permit to a self-service booth, drop-box, or the office before leaving.
  • Description

    J.E. (J. Edward) Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area is dedicated to providing quality outdoor recreational opportunities while maintaining 7,347 acres of land, 900 acres of lake, and 350 acres of impoundments. The property, which is approximately 15 miles long, is a long narrow band along the Wabash River.

    J.E. Roush Lake, also  known as Huntington Lake, was constructed in 1967 and is one of the three Upper Wabash Valley lakes operating primarily as a unit with Mississinewa and Salamonie lakes to control floodwaters along the Wabash River Basin. J.E. Roush Lake also works secondarily with other lakes downstream in reduction of lower Wabash and Ohio River floods. The lake provides benefits to nearly 60,000 acres of agricultural lands and general recreational activities associated with hunting and fishing. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers partners with Indiana Department of Natural Resources under a lease agreement. Indiana Division of Fish & Wildlife operates and maintains the recreation facilities and wildlife areas at the lake. J.E. Roush Lake was operated by what was then Indiana Division of Reservoirs until 1998 and then by the Indiana Division of State Parks until 2010.

    Most revenues used in land acquisition, development, operation, and maintenance of J.E. Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area are derived from the sale of hunting, fishing and trapping licenses. Funds are also derived from the federal Pittman-Robertson and Dingell-Johnson programs to aid fish and wildlife restoration. These funds are derived from taxes levied on sport hunting, shooting and fishing equipment. Indiana hunters and anglers are proud to provide this property for the enjoyment of all people.

  • Activities

    All visitors must obtain a one-day access permit before entering the field, regardless of their activity. The one-day access permit must be kept with you while visiting and must be completed and returned to a self-service booth, drop box, or the office before leaving. The information you provide helps us identify ways to improve Indiana’s FWAs for all users. We appreciate your patience in taking the extra time to fill out the permit. Your feedback and comments are valuable to us! Please see map below for sign-in or self-service box locations. There is also a self-service box for non-hunting activities at the Kil-So-Quah Recreation Area boat ramp. Please use the permit card labeled miscellaneous for these activities.

    Fishing

    • J.E. Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area has 15 miles of river and 200 acres of impoundments open to fishing.
    • Boat launch permits are not required at J.E. Roush Lake FWA.
    • Primary species in the main lake include channel catfish, crappie, white bass, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and more. Walleye can be found below the dam in the river. Impoundment species include largemouth bass, bluegill, and redear sunfish.
    • Motorized boats are allowed on J.E. Roush Lake only. Please use the concrete boat ramp located off of S.R. 224 at  Kil-So-Quah Recreation Area. No swimming allowed at ramp. Non-motorized boats and electric motors are allowed on both J.E. Roush Lake and its impoundments. No ramps are provided on impoundments.
    • Shoreline fishing is available at boat ramp and around the main lake and impoundments.
    • There is a 14-inch size limit for largemouth bass and smallmouth bass.
    • On Rock Creek, smallmouth bass are catch-and-release only.
    • See Fishing Regulations for details.

    Hunting

    • Hunting for furbearers, deer, rabbit,  squirrel, waterfowl, dove, pheasant, and wild turkey is common at J.E. Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area.
    • Deer tree stands and ground blinds may be used and left unattended from noon, Sept. 15 through Jan. 10. Tree stands and ground blinds must be legibly marked in English with either the owner’s DNR  customer identification number or the owner’s name, address and telephone number. A fastener used in conjunction with a tree stand and a tree or pole climber that penetrates a tree more than ½ inch is prohibited (anything that penetrates  a tree more than a ½ inch is prohibited, i.e., screw-in steps and screw-in bow and gun hangers).
    • Daily check-in is required. All hunting seasons and bag limits apply.
    • Special hunts include mourning dove, spring turkey hunting and put-take pheasant hunts.
    • Dove drawing is at 11 a.m.
    • Put-and-take pheasant hunting starts the Saturday before Thanksgiving, with sign-up online starting in September. Doors  open at 7 a.m. and close at 3:30 p.m. for the reserved put-and-take pheasant hunt.
    • For the turkey no-show drawing, doors open  by 4:30 a.m. and the no-show drawing is at 5:30 a.m.
    • Dog training is only allowed in Area 22.
    • Hunting areas accessible to persons with disabilities are available. Ask for details at office.
    • Additional hunting opportunities include youth hunts for deer, dove, turkey, and waterfowl.

    Trapping

    • The trapping draw is the first Saturday in October at 10 a.m. Contact the property office for special conditions.

    Volunteer Opportunities

    • Need a reason to get outside and move? You can volunteer alone or in small groups at this property. Some activities include trash pick-up, basic gardening, painting, and more. Call the property office for details.

    Wildlife Watching

    • J.E. Roush Lake is a long, narrow property along the floodplain of the Wabash River. It provides excellent wildlife watching throughout the year, and the spring is great for waterfowl.
    • Mushrooms, berries, and nuts may be gathered; however, a written permit is required to remove plants, animals, rocks and fossils.

    Shooting Range

    • A state-of-the-art shooting range is located at 1002 E. Division Road, Huntington, IN 46750. Phone number 260-468-2416.
    • Shooting ranges are open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis during business hours of the range and only when certified range safety officers are on duty.
    • Range fees will be charged. ($4/day adults, $2/day youth; trap and skeet range prices are $5 per round.)
    • See the Fish & Wildlife Area Shooting Ranges webpage for hours.

    Camping

    • The campground has 41 electric sites and 20 primitive sites. All campsites have fire rings and picnic tables. Camping is open all year on a first-come, first-served basis. The maximum stay is 14 days.
    • Pit toilets are available in the campground. Water available seasonally.
    • Camping, picnicking, and open campfires are allowed in the campground only. Picnicking is allowed at the Kil-So-Quah boat ramp area. Unloaded firearms, unstrung bows and arrows, and air guns maybe be possessed, but not used in the camping and picnic areas. Swimming is prohibited.

    Neighboring Land

    • Salamonie Lake, managed by the Division of State Parks, is located within 15 miles. Phone 260-468-2125.

    Swimming is prohibited.

    Please read and obey all signs.

  • Rules

    A record of Fish & Wildlife Area property rules can be found on the Indiana Fish & Wildlife Area Rules webpage. Property specific rules can be found below, if applicable. Contact the property directly for specific questions.

    Permits

    In addition to a hunting and/or fishing license, the following permits are required:

    • All visitors must obtain a one-day access permit before entering the field, regardless of their activity. The one-day access permit must be kept with you while visiting and must be completed and returned to a self-service booth, drop box, or the office before leaving. The information you provide helps us identify ways to improve Indiana’s FWAs for all users. We appreciate your patience in taking the extra time to fill out the permit. Your feedback and comments are valuable to us! Please see map below for sign in or self-service box locations. There is also a self-service box for non-hunting activities at the Kil-So-Quah Recreation Area boat ramp. Please use the permit card labeled miscellaneous for these activities.
    • No shooting of woodchuck (groundhogs) is allowed.
  • Maps