Great Salt Lake
The Great Salt Lake is a very large saltwater lake in the United States. It is in the state of Utah. It is an endorheic lake, meaning that the water in it does not flow to the ocean. It is one of the biggest endorheic lakes in the world. The lake is in the Great Basin, a large area of desert terrain covering parts of the states of Nevada, Utah, Idaho, California, and Arizona. It is many times saltier than the average of the world's oceans.
|Great Salt Lake|
Satellite photo from August 2003 after five years of drought, reaching near-record lows. Note the difference in colors between the Northern and Southern portions of the lake, the result of a railroad causeway.
|Location||Utah, United States|
|Type||Endorheic, hypersaline, generally 27% salinity|
|Primary inflows||Bear, Jordan, Weber rivers|
|Catchment area||21,500 sq mi (56,000 km2)|
|Basin countries||United States|
|Max. length||75 mi (121 km)|
|Max. width||28 mi (45 km)|
|Surface area||1,700 sq mi (4,400 km2)|
|Average depth||16 ft (4.9 m), when lake is at average level|
|Max. depth||33 ft (10 m) average, high of 45 ft (14 m) in 1987, low of 24 ft (7.3 m) in 1963|
|Water volume||15,338,693.6 acre⋅ft (18.92 km3)|
|Surface elevation||historical average of 4,200 ft (1,300 m), 4,196.6 ft (1,279.1 m) as of 2006 August 24|
|Islands||8-15 (variable, see Islands)|
|Settlements||Salt Lake and Ogden metropolitan areas.|
The lake is about 75 miles (121 km) long and 28 miles (45 km) wide. Its surface area averages 1,700 square miles (4,400 km2), but because of its desert location, its size changes very often. The three major rivers that flow into it are the Jordan, Weber, and Bear rivers. Because of its similarity to the Dead Sea in Asia, it has been called "America's Dead Sea". However, the lake is a rich habitat for many species of birds, shrimp, and other animals.