On the border of California and Arizona lies Lake Havasu, a large reservoir formed by the Parker Dam on the Colorado River 155 miles downstream from the larger and more famous Hoover Dam. Like its bigger cousin, the Parker Dam is a concrete arch-gravity dam, but it also holds the distinction of being “the deepest dam in the world,” as 235 feet of the dam’s 320-foot height was built below the riverbed. Parker Dam’s job is to generate hydroelectric power and to store water – about 210 billion US gallons – in Lake Havasu.
The water in Lake Havasu supplies cities in Southern California and Arizona and irrigates agricultural areas. Touted as “Arizona’s Playground”, the lake itself is attracts around 3.5 million visitors every year for recreational fishing, water sports, and boating. Fish found in Lake Havasu include bass, sunfish, catfish, and carp. Sturgeons were once stocked in the lake in the 1960s, and it is believed that a few large specimens still live in the lake’s waters.
Lake Havasu City and the world-famous London Bridge – it was transported all the way from London – can be found on the shore of Lake Havasu. Near the bridge is Lake Havasu State Park, a scenic strip of beaches like Windsor Beach and Cattail Cove and nature trails such as the Mohave Sunset Trail. The Mohave Sunset Trail is a 1.5-mile long hiking trail through the desert and lake shoreline.
Campsites are also available, as well as boat ramps for those who want to go on the lake. Swimming, fishing, water skiing, and boating are the main water sports in the area. The Arroyo-Camino Interpretative Garden found within the park features birds and reptiles and other examples of the diverse wildlife which can be found in the desert.
Lake Havasu is a great place to visit any time, thanks to its year-round mild climate.