About Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee is located in the heart of New Hampshire's Lakes Region, and with a total water surface of 72 square miles, it easily ranks as the state's largest lake. Well over 200 islands call Winnipesaukee their home - some large enough to accomodate numerous island homes, whereas some are small and uninhabited.
Historically, the landscape around Winnipesaukee has always drawn in ever-changing groups of people. Native Indians came and went and were followed by the savvy entrepreneurs of America's Industrial Revolution. Lake Winnipesaukee became the water head for the water system that supplied power, via a system of dams, to the mills in New Hampshire and Massachusetts via the Merrimack River. Two of Winnipesaukee's tourist steamships, owned by early, large railroad companies, began their sailing careers during this era. The Motorship Mountain Washington keeps this tradition alive today by offering boat rides on the lake during boating season.
During the recrreation era, which blossomed locally in the 1920s, the lake was central to water sports and boat races. During the 1950s, water skiing became wildly popular, and local water ski clubs produced national champions. Life on the lake became popular with celebrities, and even Bob Montana, creator of the popular comic strip, Archie, called the waterfront town, Meredith, his home.
At the same time, cottages and homes were built on the shorelines at lightening speed, as were clusters of cottage colonies. The Lakes Region had firmly gained a top spot on the list of New England tourist attractions with hundreds of thousands of people visiting the area each year; yet, the number of full-time residents in the Lakes Region is an impressive number in itself.
Lake Winnipesaukee and its surrounding towns remain front and center for healthy living and recreational enjoyment. Boating, fishing, kayaking, and swimming are just some of the water sports that remain popular. The forests surrounding the lake offer sweeping views from their mountaintop hiking trails. Further north the White Mountains offer additional hiking opportunities and more stunning vista views. Those who like a balance of nature and culture will find plenty of possibilities for shopping at specialty shops and shopping centers as well as a wide variety of dining establishments. Lake Winnipesaukee and the Lakes Region truly offer something for everyone...
Maximum depth: 180 feet
Average depth: 43 feet
Water surface: 72 square miles
Length: 25 miles (approximate)
Width: 15 miles (approximate at widest point)
Total distance around lake: 183 miles
Shoreline excluding islands: 178 miles
Total number of islands: 244
Island shoreline: 100.5 miles
Waterfront Towns of Lake Winnipesaukee: Alton, Alton Bay, Center Harbor,
Laconia, Gilford, Melvin Village, Meredith, Moultonborough, Tuftonboro,
Weirs Beach, and Wolfeboro