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about Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee is located in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire.
504 Feet above Sea Level
Maximum Depth: 180 feet
Average Depth: 43 feet
Volume: 625 billion gallons
Length: Approximately 25 miles
Width: Approximately 15 miles at widest point
Water Surface: 72 square miles
Distance around the lake: 182 miles
Shoreline excluding islands: 178 miles
Island shoreline: 100 1/2 miles
Lake Winnipesaukee is located in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire at the foothills of the White Mountains. Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest lake in the state and the 6th largest lake in the United States that lies completely within the borders of the United States. Surrounded by three mountain ranges, the wooded shoreline and crystal clear water of this spring-fed lake make it a popular summer resort and a place to rest and relax in beautiful surroundings and enjoy water sports of all sorts.
Visitors may explore the numerous villages on the shores of Lake Winnipesaukee by boat or by car. Each one offers something unique. Weirs Beach has arcades and boardwalks, waterslides, a public beach and an activity center. Meredith is a restored mill village, where you can browse through antique, art and craft galleries. Wolfeboro is a picture perfect village, right down to its historic Main Street. Center Harbor, Moultonborough, Tuftonboro, Alton, Gilford and Laconia all have their own special flavor. All communities have public parks and docks, and feature varied activities such as fireworks displays and band concerts throughout the year.
Lake Winnipesuakee offers visitors four seasons of vacation fun! Launch your boat at one of the many launch sites on the Lake. Whatever your choice of craft, Winipesuakee has 72 square miles to explore. If you don’t own a boat, you can rent one, charter one or take a cruise on one of the many excursion boats on the “Big Lake”. In the winter months when temperatures dip, families still enjoy the lakes. Ice fishing, skiing, snowmobiling, ice skating, cross country skiing or ice boating provide great family recreation.
Grand and mystical, Lake Winnipesaukee is renowned for its crystal clear water due to the fact that its watershed consists of natural springs, so it is fed pure, filtered water rather than silted runoff from rivers. This beautiful blue water makes for perfect swimming temperature in summer.
Surrounded by the Ossipee Mountain Range to the east, White Mountains to the north, and other ranges to the south and west, Winnipesaukee is known for its breath taking views. Lake Winnipesaukee is the second largest lake in New England. Its numerous islands and intimate coves make is great for recreation and exploring.
Lake Winnipesaukee and her islands provide us with much interesting history. The islands were used by Native American Indians for perhaps five thousand years. The Indians in this area were called the Pennacooks. Many of our words come from the Indians. For instance, Winnipesaukee means "Beautiful Water in High Place" or "Great Lake" or "Smile Of The Great Spirit" (Depending on which Indian you talk to!). Don't be surprised if you find an arrowhead or artifact on the shore of the Island!
Later in history, there were hotels on both Diamond and Bear Islands. On Cow Island, a gentleman by the name of Pillsbury operated a grist mill and supplied flour to local people.
One expression about Lake Winnipesaukee is that there is an island for every day of the year. Realistically, there are about 270 big enough to be called islands. The largest is Bear Island with 750 acres and the tiniest is Becky's Garden, a cluster of boulders in Center Harbor. Little-Six-Mile Island: (Group D) - Old maps call this Crescent Island, which makes sense because it's crescent shaped. A 1980 deed which states (in part) "... in the town of Moultonboro, Carroll County, New Hampshire, formerly known as Crescent Island in Lake Winnipesaukee and now named Little Six Mile Island ...". However, according to one of Bruce Heald's books, the grouping of "Zone Islands" was Little-Six-Mile, Ellie, Crescent, and Ozone Island. For the record, it is now, in fact, called Little Six Mile Island.