Mirror Lake, New Hampshire, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - New England - New Hampshire - Great North Woods - White Mountains -

Slowly the moose wades through the grasses at the edge of Mirror Lake, tipping his huge head down to drink. On the opposite shore a kayaker glides into the spring fed lake, sharing the water with a pair of loons. The mist is rising from the surface of the water, and the sun is just beginning to glow. It is morning on Mirror Lake in the foothills of New Hampshire’s White Mountains, and the day is brand new with calm, quiet natural beauty stretching endlessly ahead. With 54 acres of water wrapped in a tree-lined shoreline, Mirror Lake is the perfect place for a tranquil New England getaway.

Mirror Lake is a natural spring-fed lake just outside the town of Whitefield in western New Hampshire. The lake straddles two of New Hampshire’s tourism regions: White Mountains and Great North Woods. It has an average depth of eight feet and a maximum depth of 23 feet. While its size is not conducive to waterskiing, it is a great lake to explore by canoe or kayak. Access is from a town-maintained gravel boat launch. It is also possible to windsurf on the lake, and a sand beach provides a place for swimming and sunbathing.

The lake is considered a cold water fishery, and Mirror Lake has plenty of fish to challenge anglers. Healthy populations of largemouth bass, chain pickerel and brown bullhead can all be found in the lake. Fly fishermen can spend mornings on Mirror Lake fishing for the abundant brown trout, brook trout and rainbow trout that live in the lake. Mirror Lake is also home to a variety of wildlife including moose, deer, and wild turkeys, and occasionally lucky visitors will see eagles soaring over the lake.

Vacation rentals and real estate for sale are tucked in among the trees that surround Mirror Lake. The lake, however, still has an isolated feel, and most amenities a visitor might want can be found to the south in the town of Whitefield. Whitefield is a quaint New England town with antique shops, restaurants and small town charm.

Mirror Lake is a four-season destination with fishing and paddling in the spring, summer and fall. Fall is also the perfect time to enjoy the changing leaves either from the hiking trails around the lake or from the scenic Kancamagus Highway nearby. The 26.5 mile-long highway winds through the White Mountains and is a designated scenic byway. The White Mountains provide ample opportunities for winter recreation, and Mirror Lake is a fantastic home base. Both downhill skiing and cross country skiing can be found near the lake, and there are trails for snowmobiles and snow shoes as well. Recognized by rock climbers for its granite pitches, Mount Washington rounds out the recreation opportunities.

Franconia Notch State Park is an easy day trip from Mirror Lake. Perhaps best known for the Old Man of the Mountain, the stone profile that graces New Hampshire’s quarter, the state park offers a wide variety of activities for visitors. Gorges, natural waterfalls and beautiful scenery are all accessible from hiking trails that cross the park. Unfortunately, the ‘Old Man’ fell on May 3, 2003, but the state park is still a great place to visit.

Nestled in the natural beauty of the White Mountains, Mirror Lake is an ideal private, tranquil western New Hampshire getaway. With its clean, clear water and abundant fishing combined with the charming New England countryside and towns, Mirror Lake is a destination sure to please the entire family.

Things to do at Mirror Lake NH

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Hiking
  • Downhill Skiing
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Snowmobiling
  • Waterfall
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding
  • State Park
  • Antiquing

Fish species found at Mirror Lake NH

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Brook Trout
  • Brown Bullhead
  • Brown Trout
  • Chain Pickerel
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Pickerel
  • Pike
  • Rainbow Trout
  • Trout

Mirror Lake NH Photo Gallery

    Mirror Lake NH Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Not Dammed

    Surface Area: 54 acres

    Average Depth: 8 feet

    Maximum Depth: 23 feet

    Trophic State: Mesotrophic

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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".

    You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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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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