Suburban Skyview: Bangs Lake in Wauconda provides winter fun

Dereck Ternes of Wauconda and Drew Franklin of McHenry give no heed to the surface cracks as they get ready for some ice fishing on Bangs Lake in Wauconda.

In winter, the lake turns into a wonderland of fishing skating and the extreme thrill of ice boating (also called ice yachting).

The more than 200-acre Bangs Lake is a natural glacial lake named after Justus Bangs, the first permanent settler in Wauconda.

Bangs also named the town of Wauconda after reading a story about a Native American character.

In the early 1900s, the Palatine, Lake Zurich and Wauconda Railroad brought vacationers to the beaches of Bangs Lake, which was a popular vacation spot.

Bangs Lake became better known as the spot where "The Blues Brothers" beach scenes were filmed more than 40 years ago.

For Dereck and Drew, they didn't need to know about the history of Bangs Lake or be bothered with putting on ice skates. Their fun was self-generated, and on that cold Sunday morning their sliding on the 7 inches of ice was plenty fun for them.

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