Shubenacadie Grand Lake, Nova Scotia, Canada

Lake Locations:

Canada - Nova Scotia -

Also known as:  Grand Lake

Located just outside the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) in Nova Scotia, Grand Lake is one of the most popular area lakes for water sports. The lake is also known and most often called Shubenacadie Grand Lake because it is the seventh and largest lake in the Shubenacadie Canal system.

The Shubenacadie Canal system provided a route for boats from Halifax Harbour to the Minas Basin, avoiding the more dangerous route through Cape Sable. The canal system consisted of the Shubenacadie River and a chain of seven lakes connected by nine locks and two inclined planes with Grand Lake being located between Lock 5 and 6. Completed in 1861, the canal was used to transport goods to mining camps up river as well as to move coal, lumber, bricks, and granite to the settlements along the route. In 1870, the canal was closed when a new railway system came into the area that was able to transport goods faster and more cheaply than the ships. Today the canal system is a National Historic Civil Engineering site and used for many recreational purposes including hiking, canoeing, kayaking and white water rafting. Many of the locks and equipment used to transport ships are still in place but in disrepair due to the extreme age of the structures, but a citizens group is currently working to revitalize the route to use as a greenbelt, a wildlife park, historical sites and educational facility.

Grand Lake is a large deep lake that offers residents and visitors a recreational paradise. Parks and campgrounds around the shoreline provide beaches with swimming areas, picnic areas, walking trails, playgrounds, shoreline fishing and campsites. Numerous boat launches offer easy access to the lake for boating, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing, jet skiing, waterskiing, and fishing for smallmouth bass, striped bass, landlocked salmon, chain pickerel, and speckled trout.

Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia (Latin for New Scotland), is the major economic area within Atlantic Canada. Founded in 1749 as the first British town in Canada, the town has grown into a world renowned city. Halifax is a major international port and hosts many ships, cruise ships, tugboats, and sailboats and offers a wide variety of art galleries, museums, historic sites, sidewalk cafes, shopping venues, nightclubs, lively pubs, theatre, casinos, and professional sporting events. Pier 21 National Historic Site, sometimes called Canada’s Ellis Island, was the entry point for over one million immigrants from 1928 to 1971 and is located in the port. Take time to stroll along the oceanfront boardwalks and watch the colorful flurry of activity as ships load and unload their wares, fishermen haul in their catches and work on nets and equipment, or local craftsmen peddle their wares to tourists as they disembark from their cruise ships.

Halifax boasts over 450 restaurants and has more pubs, clubs, and nightlife venues per capita than almost anywhere else in Canada. In addition, the Halifax Regional Municipality offers year round recreational opportunities that range from beaches, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, cross country skiing, cycling, downhill skiing, horseback riding, golf, rock climbing, sailing, surfing, windsurfing, board sailing, tennis, and hiking trails. Whale watching tours and deep sea fishing for swordfish, halibut, flounder, tuna, Pollack cod, and haddock are available with the Atlantic Ocean at their door. Grand Lake is just one lake in the area, as the region has a wide choice of rivers, streams, and lakes for fun and outdoor recreation. No matter which endeavor you choose, be assured that there are plentiful guides, tours, and outfitters to ensure that your visit is safe and successful. With all this activity, a place to rest is no problem as vacation rentals include resorts, inns, bed and breakfast, cabins, camping, lodges, and private vacation homes. With so much culture, entertainment, and outdoor adventure, many choose to purchase real estate for their own piece of the action for a vacation home, retirement destination, or permanent relocation.

With big city entertainment, outdoor recreation, beautiful scenery, and historic significance, Grand Lake is a vacation destination that can please all of your traveling companions. But with so much to do, you can always come back each season with new friends to enjoy all that Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada offers and never get bored.

Things to do at Shubenacadie Grand Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Whitewater Rafting
  • Jet Skiing
  • Water Skiing
  • Golf
  • Tennis
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Rock Climbing
  • Biking
  • Downhill Skiing
  • Cross-Country Skiing
  • Horseback Riding
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Museum
  • Playground
  • Shopping
  • Casino Gambling

Fish species found at Shubenacadie Grand Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Chain Pickerel
  • Cod
  • Flounder
  • Pickerel
  • Pike
  • Salmon
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Striped Bass
  • Trout

Shubenacadie Grand Lake Photo Gallery

    Shubenacadie Grand Lake Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Lake Type: Natural Freshwater Lake, Dammed

    Water Level Control: Halifax Regional Municipality

    Surface Area: 4,549 acres

    Shoreline Length: 26 miles

    Normal Elevation (Full Pond): 43 feet

    Average Depth: 23 feet

    Maximum Depth: 72 feet

    Trophic State: Eutrophic

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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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