I have shown you many photos from and of Lake Ontario over the years. This week, I am going to share the history, uses and more beauty of the smallest (in surface area) lake of the Great Lakes. Lake Ontario has a shoreline 712 miles (1,146 km) in length. I am most familiar with the eastern shore from Oswego to Cape Vincent having grown up camping in many of the New York state parks found between the two locations.
Lake Ontario was formed after the glaciers from the last Ice Age receded along with the other Great Lakes creating the largest group of freshwater lakes on Earth. Together, the Great Lakes holds 21% of the world’s freshwater. The name Ontario means ‘beautiful lake’ and lives up to its name during the months when the Sun sets over its horizon. It is the 14th largest fresh water lake in the world.
Lake Ontario sand dunes are ecologically sensitive communities made up of beach grasses, wildflowers and cottonwood trees. New York state has protected stretches of dunes along the eastern shore to keep people from literally trampling them away.
Lake Ontario’s orientation allows for northeastern winds to flow over the waters which influences the weather along the eastern shore. Lake Effect creates record breaking snowfall from Syracuse to Watertown with some storms dumping over 40 inches (101 cm) in a day. Seasonal snowfall can easily reach 20 feet (600 cm) or more. In the other seasons, rain and fog can be caused by the lake.
Living near a Great Lake is both extreamely enjoyable and trying. I would not trade it for any other place on Earth. 🙂