As a Realtor®, I’ve noticed that many visitors find themselves drawn here by Winnipesaukee’s beauty only to leave discouraged when they can’t find waterfront properties that fit their budgets. But New Hampshire offers far more waterfront than what’s on Winnipesaukee. The Lakes Region’s wide variety of different-sized lakes offers a range of options and benefits for a variety of budgets, while still offering close proximity to the big lake.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the area’s lakes. You might just find that the saying “life is better by the lake” is true no matter what lake it is.
Lake Winnipesuakee--The sixth largest natural lake completely inside U.S. borders, Winnipesaukee hosts 44,568 acres and an estimated 625 billion gallons of water. Though it’s known as the “Tahoe of the East,” with with 72 square miles of waterbody, Winnipesaukee is considerably smaller than Lake Tahoe. However, Tahoe has only 75 miles of shoreline, compared to 182 miles of shoreline on Lake Winnipesaukee, and more than 240 miles of waterfront when you consider the lake’s more than 250 islands, approximately half of which are inhabited (Lake Tahoe has only one small island).
Winnipesaukee is 22.9 miles long, its width is 7.5 miles, and it is about 187 feet deep, with an average depth of 62 feet. It is bordered by eight Lakes Region towns: Alton, Center Harbor, Gilford, Laconia, Meredith, Moultonborough, Tuftonboro and Wolfeboro.
Big Squam--With 6,765 acres, a length of 3.7 miles and a width of 3.4 miles, and 60.5 miles of shoreline, Squam Lake is New Hampshire’s second largest lake.
Squam has a depth of 98 feet, hosts 67 islands, and is bordered by the towns of Holderness, Center Harbor and Sandwich.
It’s common knowledge that the movie “On Golden Pond” was filmed on this scenic lake, but did you know that Squam Lake was originally called “Keeseenunknipee,” which meant "the goose lake in the highlands?"
I guess that name didn’t have an enduring ring to it, so in the early 19th century the lake was given another name, Asquam, meaning "water." Eventually “Asquam” was shortened to Squam.
Lake Winnisquam--New Hampshire’s third largest lake is known for pristine waters. It has a surface area of 4,264 acres, a length of 5.4 miles, a width of 1.7 miles, an average depth of 52 feet, a maximum depth of 154 feet, and 28.2 miles of shoreline. It is bordered by Sanbornton, Tilton, Laconia, Meredith and Belmont.
Winnisquam has two basins, a larger northern basin and a smaller southern one, with a the Route 3 bridge separating the two.
Newfound Lake--Refreshed by eight underground springs, Newfound Lake is recognized as one of the cleanest lakes in the United States. It offers 4,105 acres of water, a length of 5.7 miles, a width of 2.7 miles, an average depth of 65 feet and a maximum depth of 168 feet. Newfound offers 19.8 miles of shoreline and is bordered by the communities of Bristol, Hebron, Alexandria and Bridgewater.
Newfound Lake is host to Wellington State Park, which features the largest freshwater swimming beach in the New Hampshire state park system.
Ossipee Lake--This 3,091 acre waterbody is 3.5 miles long and 2.3 miles wide. It has an average depth of 27 feet and a maximum depth of 73 feet. With 10.6 miles of shoreline, Ossipee is bordered by the communities of Ossipee and Freedom.
Lake Waukewan--Bordered by Meredith, New Hampton and Center Harbor, 912 acre Lake Waukewan is 2.1 miles long and has a width of .9 miles, and offers 8.1 miles of shorefront. It is Meredith’s water supply, featuring clean water and a maximum depth of 68 feet and an average depth of 22 ft. Waukewan flows into Meredith Bay of Lake Winnipesaukee through the Inn at Mills Falls.
Opechee Bay--This 426 acre lake is about half the size of Central Park in New York City. It is 1.9 miles long and .7 miles wide, about 65 feet deep, and offers 5.9 miles of shoreline. It is bordered exclusively by the City on the Lakes, Laconia.
Paugus Bay flows into Lake Opechee at the Lakeport Dam and Opechee flows into Lake Winnisquam in downtown Laconia.
Lake Wicwas--I sometimes wonder how many people visit and pass through Meredith without ever realizing that there’s another lake in town besides Winnipesaukee! Though overshadowed by the big lake, quiet, peaceful Lake Wicwas (aka Wickwas) offers 322 acres of surface, a length of 1.2 miles, a width of .5 miles, and 5.9 miles of shorefront. It has an average depth of 13 feet and a maximum depth of about 35 feet.
Lake Kanasatka--Located a half mile north of Winnipesaukee, this beautiful 371 acre lake offers scenic views of Red Hill, It is 2 miles long and .6 miles wide with an average depth of 18 feet and a maximum depth of 30 feet. This peaceful lake offers 5.2 miles of shoreline in the low property tax town of Moultonborough.
There are presently 157 waterfront properties actively listed for sale on these nine lakes alone, ranging in price from $159,900 to $19.8 million. When you add “Lake Access”, “Right of Way to Water” and/or “Beach Rights” to the search the number of properties will expand dramatically, as will your options.
“Lakes Region” is plural for a reason. This beautiful area offers a wide variety of lake options for a variety of budgets, while still offering close proximity to the big lake. Contact me or visit www.RocheRealty.com to find your “life is better by the lake” home!