A freshwater lake located between New York State on the west, Vermont on the east, and Canada’s Quebec province on the north, Lake Champlain is approximately 120 miles (193 km) long, 12 miles (19 km) wide, and 400 feet (122 m) at its deepest trench. The sixth-largest lake in the United States by volume, Lake Champlain contains 71 islands. (Source: LCLT.org) Source waters include the Boquet, Ausable, and Saranac rivers in New York and the Richelieu, Missisquoi, and Lamoille rivers in Vermont. Contrary to a common misperception, the lake flows northward into the Richelieu River (and eventually into the St. Lawrence River.)
Inspiring artists, musicians, and vacationers for centuries, Lake Champlain is a creative and cultural epicenter for the Northeast. To get in the mood, how about a singalong of Alfred Bryan and Albert Gumble’s “On Lake Champlain”? (Check out the lyrics and audio recording.)
Named for the French explorer, Samuel de Champlain, who was the first European to map the region in 1609, the waterway quickly became an important transportation and trade artery. The Battle of Valcour (October 11, 1776) during the American Revolutionary War and the Battle of Plattsburgh (September 6-11, 1814) during the War of 1812 wove the majestic lake into early American history. Today, Lake Champlain is a popular destination for vacationing, swimming, boating, fishing, and camping.