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Lake Shasta
Location Shasta-Trinity National Forest
Shasta County, California
Coordinates 40°45′37″N 122°22′19″W / 40.7602°N 122.37190°W / 40.7602; -122.37190Coordinates: 40°45′37″N 122°22′19″W / 40.7602°N 122.37190°W / 40.7602; -122.37190
Lake type Reservoir
Primary inflows Sacramento River, Pit River, McCloud River
Primary outflows Sacramento River
Basin countries United States
Max. length 35 mi (56 km)
Surface area 30,000 acres (12,000 ha)
Max. depth 517 ft (158 m)
Water volume 4,552,000 acre·ft (5,615 Gl)
Shore length1 365 mi (587 km)
Surface elevation 1,067 ft (325 m)
Settlements Lakehead
References U.S. Geological Survey Geographical Names Information System: Lake Shasta
1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.

Lake Shasta, also called Shasta Lake, is an artificial lake created by the construction of Shasta Dam across the Shasta-Trinity National Forest of Shasta County, California. With a capacity of 4,552,000 acre·ft (5,615 Gl) at full pool, the lake has an elevation of 1,067 feet (325 m), and a surface area of 30,000 acres (12,000 ha), making it the state's largest reservoir, and its third largest body of water after Lake Tahoe and the Salton Sea.

Ten miles (16 km) north of the city of Redding, with the town of Lakehead its northern shores, Shasta Lake is popular for boating, water skiing, camping, house boating, and fishing. Formed by the damming of the Sacramento River, Pit River, McCloud River and several smaller tributaries, the lake has 365 mi (587 km) of mostly steep mountainous shoreline covered with tall evergreen trees and manzanita. The maximum depth is 517 feet (158 m).

Shasta Dam was constructed between 1935 and 1945, while the lake was formed in 1948. It became the second largest dam, and tallest concrete dam in the United States. Known as the keystone of the Central Valley Project, outflow from Shasta Dam provides electricity and irrigation for widespread areas of California below the dam as well as flood control for the Sacramento River during the rainy season. Beneath the lake is the submerged town of Kennett, defunct tunnels and right of way of the Southern Pacific Transportation Company, parts of which can be seen when the water level is low.



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