Lake Powell

Splash Longer in the Waters of Lake Powell

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By Dixie Brunner

A lake in the middle of the desert? Explore the astounding maze of carved canyons, either by foot or boat. Swim in its crystal clear, refreshing water. Take in the scenic beauty of the buttes and mesas surrounding it. You must linger longer here!

Lake Powell : Kanab, Utah Area Guide :

Rainbow Bridge can be accessed by boat from Wahweap Marina on Lake Powell. Photo by Lisa Ladd.

Lake Powell offers everything from stunning vistas, boating and fishing, hiking and quiet family vacations, to fine amenities, extreme sports, and a great party atmosphere.

Football teams, important corporate executives and the rich and famous, as well as retirees, recreational enthusiasts and casual family travelers, come to Lake Powell to experience the amazing setting and plethora of vacation experiences. 

When viewing this enormous body of water straddling the Utah/Arizona border, you realize Lake Powell is unarguably one of the most beautiful in the world. Located in the center of the Colorado Plateau, it is the largest manmade lake in North America. Its geographic setting amid the arid, desert landscape makes it the “ocean” of the western states.

The immediate geography leading to Lake Powell has the mysterious look of moonscape. Large, wind-hewn mountains, scattered boulders and deep crevices mark every turn. 

Lake Powell was named after explorer John Wesley Powell, who was one of the first to navigate the Colorado River. The lake possesses more shoreline than the Pacific coast of the United States.

The lake, with a dramatic backdrop of Navajo Mountain, was created when the Glen Canyon Dam was built. A huge power plant was constructed to harness the awesome energy of the Colorado River as it begins its impressive journey through the Grand Canyon.

Lake Powell is probably first and foremost a boater’s paradise. Most people will tell you the only way to really “experience” the lake is by boat. Aquatic access can offer you the opportunity to view such natural wonders as Hole-in-the-Rock and Rainbow Bridge (the largest natural stone span in the world). You may choose to rent a houseboat to explore the myriad of secret coves and canyons, where 200 to 300 foot rock walls tower above you.

Lone Rock is the first Lake Powell stop travelers should make when coming from Kanab. Lone Rock is named for the mountain of rock rising out of the large expanse of aqua water. With miles of sandy access, the beach seems the logical place to unwind after a hot drive. Lone Rock Beach offers swimming, boating access, and beach front camping. Showers and restrooms are available. 

A quick word of caution – in your hurry to dip your toes in the refreshing waters of Lone Rock – proceed carefully. The same beautiful sand that’s appealing to beach worshippers, is also a nightmare for your vehicle! Park on solid ground! You don’t want to get stuck.

Nearby, the full service Wahweap Marina offers all the amenities a traveler needs. If you’re planning on boating on Lake Powell, seek the advice of local experts to direct you on the best sights to see.

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