Kuybyshev Reservoir, Povolzhsky, Russia

Lake Locations:

Russia - Povolzhsky -

Also known as:  Kuybyshevskoye Reservoir, Kuibyshev Reservoir

The Kuybyshev Reservoir or Kuybyshevskoye Reservoir is a 1,593,823-acre lake in the middle of the Volga and lower Kama rivers in west central (Middle Volga Region) Russia. The reservoir was created by the Zhiguli Hydroelectric Station dam located between the cities of Zhigulevsk and Togliatti in Samara Oblast. The filling of the reservoir in 1957 resulted in a number of villages and towns rebuilding on higher ground. Although always a popular river for fishing and boating, the damming of the Volga River only added to the number or recreational activities for residents and visitors to the region.

The Kuybyshev Reservoir is 310 miles long with a maximum width of 21 miles. 1,618 miles of shoreline offers boaters and anglers plenty of opportunity to enjoy the lake. Fishing is popular for both commercial and recreational reasons. Sport fish in the reservoir include sturgeon, Northern cisco, and several species of carp. Boating and other water sports are an enjoyable pastime with many small islands to visit and explore in the reservoir’s northern end. Tour boats are a common site and give visitors a unique view of the hills and forests that line the banks of the lake. For those interested in ancient history, you can rent a boat in the city of Kazan and sail to the island of Sviyazhsk where a historic town with early Russian architecture is located. Major cities on the reservoir include Kazan, Ulyanovsk, and Tolyatti along with several ports shipyards

The city of Kazan, located at the confluence of the Kazanka River and the Kuybyshev Reservoir, is one of Russia’s largest cities and the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan. Kazan is a major commercial, cultural and industrial hub, as well as being at the heart of Tatar culture. During a turbulent time in the city’s history, various parts of the city were destroyed, however many ancient buildings have been preserved. The city has a beautiful citadel which was given the status of being a World Heritage Site in 2000. The leaning Soyembika Tower is regarded as being one of the city’s most prominent landmarks. Other landmarks and places of interest in Kazan include the five-domed Annunciation Cathedral, the remains of the Savior Monastery, and St. Peter and St. Paul’s Cathedral dating back to the 18th century.

Ulyanovsk, located on the western shore of Kuybyshev Reservoir, is famous for being the birthplace of Vladimir Lenin, but was originally established as a fortress town in 1648. Today, the city has become a popular tourist destination due to it’s location on the reservoir, forests, mountains and breathtaking landscapes. A mostly industrial city, it is home to the Avistar-SP airplane plant and the UAZ automobile manufacturing plant. A railway bridge that was constructed in 1916, connects the two sides of the city across the Kuybyshev Reservoir. A second bridge has been under construction for years to relieve this bridge of traffic, as it is the only bridge over the river that exists at this time. After sundown, visitors to the city can either relax at a local nightclub or grab a bite to eat in one of the many restaurants.

The city of Tolyatti, located just north of the Zhiguli Hydroelectric Station dam on the Kuybyshev Reservoir, was founded in 1737 as a fortress called Stavropol by the Russian politician Vasily Tatishchev. Informally it was often referred as Stavropol-na-Volge to distinguish it from Stavropol, a large city in South-West Russia. During the construction of the Zhiguli Hydroelectric Station, the old town fell into the flooding zone of the reservoir and was completely rebuilt at a higher location. In 1964, the city was renamed Tolyatti after Palmiro Togliatti, the longest-serving secretary of the Italian Communist Party. Today the city is best known for the Volga Automobile Factory.

Although the are some pristine beaches and beautiful wooded areas along the shores of the Kuybyshev Reservoir, the area is rather steep in places and not the best place for camping or picnics. Outdoor enthusiasts will want to travel east to the town of Samara. Samara’s beaches are perhaps the city’s biggest attraction. In the summer, they are packed with visitors soaking up the sun and swimming in the water of the Volga River. Samara is one of the largest cities in Russia with over one million people. It is located on the east bank of the Volga River, which serves as its western boundary. Its northern boundary is formed by the Sokolyi Hills and by the Steppes in the south and east. Across the river you will find Samara Bend National Park which features hiking trails, camping areas and picnic facilities. The park is also known for its famous raft trips which will take you on an exciting 10-day camping trip through the park’s backwaters. The city of Samara is know for it’s active nightlife along with museums, theaters, parks, zoos and interesting historical monuments.

With its balanced mix of tourist attractions, history and breathtaking natural splendor, a visit to the Kuybyshev Reservoir and Middle Volga Region of Russia is sure to be a vacation you’ll not soon forget.

Things to do at Kuybyshev Reservoir

  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Camping
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • National Park
  • Museum

Fish species found at Kuybyshev Reservoir

  • Carp
  • Cisco
  • Sturgeon

Kuybyshev Reservoir Photo Gallery

    Kuybyshev Reservoir Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

    Water Level Control: Zhiguli Hydroelectric Station

    Surface Area: 1,593,823 acres

    Shoreline Length: 1,618 miles

    Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 170 feet

    Average Depth: 26 feet

    Maximum Depth: 135 feet

    Water Volume: 46,453,866 acre-feet

    Completion Year: 1957

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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