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Lake Mead

From Academic Kids

Lake Mead is the largest man-made lake and reservoir in the United States. It is located on the Colorado River about 30 mi(48 km) southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, between the states of Nevada and Arizona. Formed by water impounded by Hoover Dam, it extends 110 mi (180 km) behind the dam, holding approximately 28.5 million acre feet (35 km³) of water. The water held in Lake Mead is released via aqueducts to communities in southern California and Nevada.

The lake was named after Elwood Mead, who was commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation from 1924 to 1936 during the planning and construction of the Boulder Canyon Project that created the dam and lake.

The Lake Mead National Recreation Area was established in 1964 and offers year-round recreation options.

The accumulated water from Hoover Dam forced the evacuation of several communities, most notably St. Thomas, Nevada, whose last resident left the town in 1938. The ruins of St. Thomas are sometimes visible when the water level in Lake Mead drops below normal.

Access from the northwest from interstate 15 is through Valley of Fire State Park and the Moapa Indian Reservation.

Recreation

Lake Mead offers many types of recreation to locals and visitors. Boating is the most popular. Additional activities include, fishing (not recommended by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service), water skiing, swimming, and relaxing in the sun. The area also has many coves with rocky cliffs and sandy beaches to explore. There are several small to medium sized islands in the lake area depending on the water level.

Statistics

  • Surface area: 247 mi² (640 km²), backing up 110 mi (180 km) behind the dam.
  • Water volume: approximately 46 billion yd³ (35.2 km³), or 28.5 million acre feet (35 km³); nearly two years of average Colorado River flow; largest man-made reservoir in the U.S.
  • Shoreline: 550 mi (885 km)
  • Visitors per year: 8 – 10 million per year (Lake Mead National Recreation Area)

External links

Colorado River system
Dams and aqueducts (see US Bureau of Reclamation)
Shadow Mountain Dam | Granby Dam | Glen Canyon Dam | Hoover Dam | Davis Dam | Parker Dam | Palo Verde Diversion Dam | Imperial Dam | Laguna Dam | Morelos Dam | Colorado River Aqueduct | San Diego Aqueduct | Central Arizona Project Aqueduct | All-American Canal | Coachella Canal | Redwall Dam
Natural features
Colorado River | Rocky Mountains | Colorado River Basin | Grand Lake | Sonoran desert | Mojave desert | Imperial Valley | Colorado Plateau | Grand Canyon | Glen Canyon | Marble Canyon | Paria Canyon | Gulf of California/Sea of Cortez | Salton Sea
Tributaries
Dirty Devil River | Dolores River | Escalante River | Gila River | Green River | Gunnison River | Kanab River | Little Colorado River | Paria River | San Juan River | Virgin River
Major reservoirs
Fontenelle Reservoir | Flaming Gorge Reservoir | Taylor Park Reservoir | | Navajo Reservoir | Lake Powell | Lake Mead | Lake Havasu
Dependent states
Arizona | California | Colorado | Nevada | New Mexico | Utah (See: Colorado River Compact)
Designated areas
Glen Canyon National Recreation Area | Lake Mead National Recreation Area

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