About Lake Erie

Lake Erie is the fourth largest lake (by surface area) of the  five Great Lakes in North America, and the eleventh-largest globally if measured in terms of surface area. It is the southernmost, shallowest, and smallest by volume of the Great Lakes and therefore also has the shortest average water residence time. At its deepest point, Lake Erie is 210 feet deep.

Want to learn more about Lake Erie?  Click here for a short three-minute video.


The Five Great Lakes


Situated on the International Boundary between Canada and the United States, Lake Erie’s northern shore is the Canadian province of Ontario, with the U.S. states of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York on its western, southern, and eastern shores. These jurisdictions divide the surface area of the lake with water boundaries

Lake Erie (42.2° N, 81.2W) has a mean elevation of 571 feet above sea level. It has a surface area of 9,990 square miles with a length of 241 statute miles and breadth of 57 statute miles at its widest points.

Also because of its shallowness, and in spite of being the warmest lake in the summer, it is also the first to freeze in the winter. The waves build very quickly. Major cities along Lake Erie include Buffalo; Erie, Pennsylvania; Toledo, Ohio; and Cleveland, Ohio.

Photo provided by Carrie Jennings

Photo provided by Carrie Jennings