Watery Wednesday #151: Lake Mead

Lake Mead from an overlook at Hoover Dam.  June 17, 2011.

Lake Mead from an overlook at Hoover Dam. June 17, 2011.

This is my post for Watery Wednesday.  To see more of our beautiful watery world, or to join and post your own pictures to share, click HERE.

After visiting the Grand Canyon, Betsy and I headed west to go around the canyon to get to Utah and Zion National Park.  Along the way we stopped at Hoover Dam and Lake Mead.

Lake Mead was formed by Hoover Dam on the Colorado River, and was named after Elwood Mead, the Bureau of Reclamation commissioner at the time the dam was built.  Lake Mead is the 16th largest man-made lake in the world and the largest man-made lake in the Western Hemisphere.  The lake occupies about 1.5 million acres — twice the size of Rhode Island — and has a shoreline of approximately 820 miles.

The National Park Service established Lake Mead as a national recreation area in 1964.  The lake offers year-round recreation, including boating, swimming, hiking and wildlife viewing.

Lake Mead as seen from across the desert. June 17, 2011.

Lake Mead is surrounded by red sandstone and black lava rock in Black Canyon.  Some of the lava hills are approximately 6 million years old.  The contrast between the blue lake and the desert sands is striking, and attracts many visitors each year.

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11 Responses to “Watery Wednesday #151: Lake Mead”

  1. Colin (HB) Says:

    George, that sure is one big hell of a lake.
    Where does it get all its water from being in such arid
    A most informative blog – thanks for showing it.
    Colin (HB)

  2. Sandra Says:

    whoo hoo water and desert at the same place. that is a lot of miles, had not idea it was that big.

  3. EG Wow, Canada Says:

    I’ve heard of Lake Mead but have never been there. Seems peculiar, a lake in the desert.

  4. Ruth Hiebert Says:

    This is a place of awesome beauty.

  5. Martha Z Says:

    We stopped by there as well this year. I wanted to see that new bridge. It’s quite spectacular.

  6. The Incredible Woody Says:

    It is amazing how large that lake is! And it is also amazing to think about how much water it would take to bring it back up to normal levels!!

  7. Sylvia Kirkwood Says:

    It is indeed an amazing and beautiful place!! Terrific captures, George, and I always enjoy learning the historical details you include. I’ve been there and it is awesome. Hope your week is going well!


  8. Ginny Hartzler Says:

    O.K. George, you got me. This isn’t April Fools is it? I had no idea that there even ARE man made lakes!!! And the size of this is almost incomprehensible!! It IS all very pretty, and I learned something big today!!

  9. Busy Bee Suz Says:

    The lake is beautiful! Can you imagine living in that area if the lake was NOT there…boring. 🙂

  10. Carletta Says:

    A beautiful man made lake!
    I wouldn’t have thought the water to be so blue – it’s lovely!

  11. magicalmysticalteacher Says:

    Sadly, Lake Mead is vanishing. If the long-standing drought in the Southwest doesn’t break soon, Lake Mead has not many more years to “live.”


    If you’re stressed and weary
    Try a thing or two:
    Go down to the river,
    Take a friend with you;
    Take your shoes and socks off,
    Plunge in twenty toes—
    Feel the waters’ healing
    As the river flows!

    © 2011 by Magical Mystical Teacher

    Puddle of Light

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