From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Lake Mead is the largest man-made lake and reservoir in the United States. It is located on the Colorado River about 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, in 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.
The 1983 high-water mark or "bathtub ring" is visible in many photos that show the shoreline of Lake Mead. The bathtub ring is white because of the deposition of minerals on previously submerged surfaces.
Access from the northwest from Interstate 15 is through Valley of Fire State Park and the Moapa Indian Reservation.
At the bottom of the lake is a military plane from the late 1940s that was used to make atmosphere measurements.
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Study/LakeMead/lake_mead.html# (for satellite photos)
http://www.nps.gov/lame/ (National Park Service site)