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Lake Okanagan

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Lake Okanagan

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Okanagan Lake is a large, deep lake in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. The lake is 135 km long, between 4 and 5 km wide, and has a surface area of 351 km².[1][2][3][4]


Okanagan Lake is composed of three basins: a larger north basin, a central or mid basin, and a southern basin. The lake is drained by the Okanagan River, which exits the lake's south end via a canal through the city of Penticton to Skaha Lake, from whence the river continues southwards into the rest of the South Okanagan and through Okanogan County, Washington to its confluence with the Columbia.

The lake's maximum depth is 232 metres near Grant Island (also called "Whiskey Island" or "Seagull Island" by locals). There is one other island known as Rattlesnake Island, much farther south by Squally Point. Some areas of the lake have up to 750 metres of glacial and post-glacial sediment fill which were deposited during the Pleistocene Epoch.[5]

Notable features of the Okanagan Valley include terraces which were formed due to the periodic lowering of the lake's predecessor, glacial Lake Penticton. These terraces are now used extensively for agriculture such as fruit cultivation.

Geographical context

Cities bordering the lake include Vernon in the north, Penticton in the south, Kelowna and West Kelowna in the centre, as well as the smaller municipalities of Lake Country (north of Kelowna), Peachland (south of West Kelowna), and Summerland (north-west of Penticton).

Various lake features include Rattlesnake Island (a small island east of Peachland), Squally Point (a popular cliff-diving area) & Fintry Delta on the west side.

The five-lane William R. Bennett Bridge, a floating bridge with a high boat passage arch connects Kelowna to the district of West Kelowna and the community of Westbank. This bridge replaced the three-lane floating Okanagan Lake Bridge on May 30, 2008 which had a lift span for passage of large boats.


Many parks and beaches are found along the shores of the lake, which make boating and swimming very popular activities. The lake is home to several species of fish, including rainbow trout and kokanee. It is said by some to be home to its own lake monster - a giant serpent-like creature named Ogopogo.

See also


External links

  • Bacon Magazine: The Ogo Pogo
  • Template:Sister-inline

Template:Okanagan communities

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