Situated on the northern edge of Wisconsin, Lake Superior extends from the upper peninsula of Michigan north to Ontario, Canada, and reaches west to the eastern edge of Minnesota. The wreck was immortalized by Gordon Lightfoot in his ballad "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald". Water temperatures on Lake Michigan make it to the 60s in July and August and can sometimes make it into the 70s when air temperatures have been in the 90s for a number of continuous days.The water of Lake Michigan has an unusual circulatory pattern — it resembles the traffic flow in a suburban cul-de-sac — and moves very slowly. Receive news and offers from our other brands? This feature makes the lake dimictic. Over 300 streams and rivers empty into Lake Superior. The deepest point in Lake Superior (about 40 miles north of Munising, Michigan) is 1,300 feet (400 meters) below the surface. The southern shores of Lake Superior boasts Pictured Rocks, a 42 mile stretch of gorgeous, multicolored sandstone cliffs with waterfalls and caves galore. The last time Lake Superior froze over was in 2014. [34] The lake lies in this long-extinct Mesoproterozoic rift valley, the Midcontinent Rift. The southern shore of Lake Superior between Grand Marais, Michigan, and Whitefish Point is known as the "Graveyard of the Great Lakes" and more ships have been lost around the Whitefish Point area than any other part of Lake Superior. Lake Superior- Is the Largest and Deepest Great Lake. [31] Normally, bacteria decaying a sunken body will bloat it with gas, causing it to float to the surface after a few days. Lake Vostok - ~1,000 m/~3,300 ft. Vostok Lake in Antarctica is, at 3,300 feet, the fourth deepest … Marie in 1662. The lake's water level fluctuates from month to month, with the highest lake levels in October and November. The region surrounding the lake has proved to be rich in minerals, with copper, iron, silver, gold and nickel the most frequently mined. How deep is Lake Superior? [46], More than 80 species of fish have been found in Lake Superior. The 729-foot ore freighter Edmund Fitzgerald sank in a roiling Lake Superior on Nov. 10, 1975. The following tables can be sorted by column. The retreat left gravel, sand, clay and boulder deposits. The Caspian Sea, while larger than Lake Superior in both surface area and volume, is brackish; though presently isolated, prehistorically the Caspian has been repeatedly connected to and then isolated from the Mediterranean via the Black Sea. [a] The shoreline of the lake stretches 2,726 miles (4,387 km) (including islands). Lake Superior is home to about 80 species of fish, including carp and varieties of trout, salmon and perch. In the summer of 1985, Lake Superior reached its highest recorded level at 2.33 feet (0.71 m) above datum. The lake's name comes from the French word lac supérieur, which means "upper lake." Lake Superior got its name from having the most volume of water among the five lakes in the area, therefore being "Superior". The lake is about 160 miles (257 kilometers) wide and about 350 miles (563 km) long. The Ojibwe name for the lake is gichi-gami (pronounced gitchi-gami or kitchi-gami in different dialects),[13] meaning "great sea". Two recent consecutive winters (2013–2014 and 2014–2015) brought unusually high ice coverage to the Great Lakes, and on March 6, 2014, overall ice coverage peaked at 92.5%, the second-highest in recorded history. Twice per year, however, the water column reaches a uniform temperature of 39 Â°F (4 Â°C) from top to bottom, and the lake waters thoroughly mix. The larger cities on Lake Superior include the twin ports of Duluth, Minnesota and Superior, Wisconsin; Thunder Bay, Ontario; Marquette, Michigan; and the twin cities of Sault Ste. [47][48], Lake Superior has fewer dissolved nutrients relative to its water volume than the other Great Lakes and so is less productive in terms of fish populations and is an oligotrophic lake. The first steamboat to run on the lake was the Independence in 1847, whereas the first steamers on the other Great Lakes began sailing in 1816.[39][40]. Most of the Pukaskwa Pits were likely made during this time. To reach its deepest point, you'd need to descend 1,276 feet – about the distance of a ride down from the top floor of Chicago's 108-story Willis Tower. It is shared by the Canadian province of Ontario to the north, the U.S. state of Minnesota to the west, and Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan to the south. That number becomes 88 by including all fish species found in the lake, its estuaries and associated wetlands. During the Precambrian (between 4.5 billion and 540 million years ago) magma forcing its way to the surface created the intrusive granites of the Canadian Shield. Species native to the lake include: banded killifish, bloater, brook trout, burbot, cisco, lake sturgeon, lake trout, lake whitefish, longnose sucker, muskellunge, northern pike, pumpkinseed, rock bass, round whitefish, smallmouth bass, walleye, white sucker and yellow perch. Lake Baikal in southern Russia is the world's deepest lake. Overall, the Great Lakes reached a 91 percent ice cover that year, which is the most the lakes have frozen since 1979. According to other sources, the full Ojibwe name is Ojibwe Gichigami ("Ojibwe's Great Sea") or Anishinaabe Gichigami ("Anishinaabe's Great Sea"). Stay up to date on the coronavirus outbreak by signing up to our newsletter today. There is a small population of endangered whooping cranes on the lake's north shore, one of only two crane species in North America. ... 12. Lake Superior has its origins in the North American Mid-Continent Rift of 1.1 to 1.2 billion years ago, which produced a huge plume of hot mantle where the present lake sits. The lake holds 3 quadrillion gallons of fresh water. [12], Largest of the Great Lakes of North America, International Lake Superior Board of Control, Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park, Great Storms of the North American Great Lakes, List of shipwrecks of western Lake Superior, Great Recycling and Northern Development Canal, "Global Land One-Kilometer Base Elevation (GLOBE) v.1", "Tunnel Valleys, Glacial Surges, and Subglacial Hydrology of the Superior Lobe, Minnesota", "Great Lakes: Basic Information: Physical Facts", Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, "Superior Pursuit: Facts About the Greatest Great Lake", "Global Warming Is Shrinking the Great Lakes", "Lake Superior Warming Faster than Surrounding Climate", "Extensive Great Lakes Ice Coverage to Limit Severe Weather, Pose Challenges to Shipping Industry", "After Achieving 95 Percent Coverage, Lake Superior's Ice Breaking Up", "Environmental Climatology of Lake Superior", "NOAA Technical Memorandum ERL GLERL-29: Evaporation from Lake Superior", Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, "Ontario Amethyst: Ontario's Mineral Emblem", "Century-Old Shipwreck Discovered: Ore Carrier Went Down in Lake Superior on Its Second Voyage", "Increasing Stoichiometric Imbalance in North America's Largest Lake: Nitrification in Lake Superior", "Great Lakes Sensitivity to Climatic Forcing: Hydrological Models", "Rockin' the Rift, The Billion-Year-Old Split that Made Us", Lake Superior NOAA nautical chart #14961 online, Parks Canada - Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area, Conference of Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Governors and Premiers,, Articles with dead external links from February 2020, Articles with permanently dead external links, Articles with incomplete citations from February 2020, Articles using infobox body of water without alt, Articles using infobox body of water without alt bathymetry, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2013, Wikipedia articles with WorldCat-VIAF identifiers, Srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, 1,729 mi (2,783 km) plus 997 mi (1,605 km) for islands, This page was last edited on 30 November 2020, at 22:54. Another culture known as the Terminal Woodland Indians (c. AD 900–1650) has been found. By the early 1600s, the Ojibway people had established a village of several thousand on Madeline Island. Isle Royale contains several lakes, some of which also contain islands. Lake Superior boasts extremely clear water, with an average underwater visibility of 27 feet (8.2 m). Basin depth is 8-foot minimum entry and main basin: 5-foot depth at dock and ramp ends. As of 2017, there were only 483 individuals in the wild across North America, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Lake Superior drains into Lake Huron via the St. Marys River. Shipping was slow to arrive at Lake Superior in the 19th century. The lake's surface temperature rose by 4.5 Â°F (2.5 Â°C) from 1979 to 2006.[32]. It takes almost 200 years for the lake to refill with new water, according to the University of Wisconsin. Lake Superior is so large and so deep that its retention time – about how long an average drop of water remains in the Lake – is 191 years. Lake Superior's size reduces the severity of the seasons of its humid continental climate (more typically seen in locations like Nova Scotia). The Objibways said that the lake was protected by Nanabijou, Spirit of the Deep Sea Water, according to the University of Wisconsin. In the most recent geological history, during the Wisconsin glaciation 10,000 years ago, ice covered the region at a thickness of 1.25 miles (2 km). They are believed to be the direct ancestors of the Ojibwe and Cree.[37]. This hard diabase protects the layers of sedimentary rock below, forming the flat-topped mesas in the Thunder Bay area. In the 18th century, as the booming fur trade supplied Europe with beaver hats, the Hudson's Bay Company had a virtual monopoly in the region until 1783, when the rival North West Company was formed. The average underwater visibility of Lake Superior is about 8 metres or 27 feet, making it the cleanest and clearest of the Great Lakes. The average depth of Lake Superior is 483 feet or 147 meters deep. By The Objibways said that the lake was protected by Nanabijou, Spirit of the Deep Sea Water, according to the University of Wisconsin. It has an Average Depth of 483 ft (147 m) deep. The deepest lake in North America is the Great … Live Science is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. This is a result of the underdeveloped soils found in its relatively small watershed. Marie, Michigan, and Sault Ste. The land contours familiar today were carved by the advance and retreat of the ice sheet. Pitz.[43]. [7] There is enough water in Lake Superior to cover the entire land mass of North and South America to a depth of 30 centimetres (12 in). The first people came to the Lake Superior region 10,000 years ago after the retreat of the glaciers in the last Ice Age. It has a maximum length of 350 statute miles (560 km; 300 nmi) and maximum breadth of 160 statute miles (257 km; 139 nmi). New York, [44] This is because of the unusually cold water, under 36 Â°F (2 Â°C) on average around 1970. In addition, many fish species have been either intentionally or accidentally introduced to Lake Superior: Atlantic salmon, brown trout, carp, chinook salmon, coho salmon, freshwater drum, pink salmon, rainbow smelt, rainbow trout, round goby, ruffe, sea lamprey and white perch. They were Algonkian people who hunted, fished and gathered berries. Clear water laps the shore at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. The Great Lakes Circle Tour is a designated scenic road system connecting all of the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River.[29]. [30] The water surface's slow reaction to temperature changes, seasonally ranging between 32 and 55 Â°F (0–13 Â°C) around 1970,[31] helps to moderate surrounding air temperatures in the summer (cooler with frequent sea breeze formations) and winter, and creates lake effect snow in colder months. Records show that Lake Michigan and Lake Ontario are the only lakes to have resisted freezing over since recording began in the early 1900s. They are known as the Plano, and they used stone-tipped spears to hunt caribou on the northwestern side of Lake Minong. Today, tourism is another significant industry: the sparsely populated Lake Superior country, with its rugged shorelines and wilderness, attracts vacationers and adventurers. The low water was a continuation of the dropping lake levels from the previous year, 1925, which set low-water records for October through December. There was a problem. Amethyst formed in some of the cavities created by the Midcontinent Rift and there are several amethyst mines in the Thunder Bay area.[35]. All 29 crew members died and no bodies were recovered. The Duluth Ship Canal is an artificial canal cut through Minnesota Point, providing direct access to Duluth harbor from Lake Superior.Begun privately in 1871, it was put under federal supervision and maintenance several years later. How Big & Deep is Lake Superior? The shoreline measures 2,726 miles (4,385 km), according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The greatest and biggest of all the Great Lakes is Lake Superior. There are 78 different species of fish that call the big lake home. [37], The Anishinaabe People, which includes the Ojibwe or Chippewa, have inhabited the Lake Superior region for over five hundred years and were preceded by the Dakota, Fox, Menominee, Nipigon, Noquet and Gros Ventres. The first people to settle in the region arrived around 8000 B.C., after glaciers retreated, according to History of Lake Superior: A Timeline. Hiking, camping, sightseeing, and four-season outdoor opportunities abound. During most winters, the lake is 40 to 95 percent covered with ice, although it rarely completely freezes. The hills and mountains that border the lake hold moisture and fog, particularly in the fall. The continental crust was later riven, creating one of the deepest rifts in the world. How Deep is Crater Lake? In the winter of 1926 Lake Superior reached its lowest recorded level at 1.58 feet (0.48 m) below datum. The deepest point in Lake Superior is 1,300 feet (400 meters) below the surface, making a complete freeze a … Freezing of the lakes is monitored because it affects hydropower generation, commercial shipping, the fishing industry and more, according to the Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research. 5. They called Lake Superior either Ojibwe Gichigami ("the Ojibwe's Great Sea") or Anishnaabe Gichgamiing ("the Anishinaabe's Great Sea"). [13], The first French explorers approaching the great inland sea by way of the Ottawa River and Lake Huron in the 17th century referred to their discovery as le lac supérieur (the upper lake, i.e.
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