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Factors contributing to the maintenance of oligotrophy in an alpine glacial moraine lake (Wallowa lake) in Northeast Oregon

Factors contributing to the maintenance of oligotrophy in an alpine glacial moraine lake (Wallowa lake) in Northeast Oregon

Northwest Science 55(2): 95-107

ISSN/ISBN: 0029-344X

The limnology of renowned Wallowa Lake in northeast Oregon has been largely ignored despite the lake's importance as a landmark attraction in the Wallowa Mountains, its past reputation as a famous spawning site for sea-run salmon and concern over the effects of proliferating recreation and land-use activities on lake quality and longevity. The lake has remained in remarkably good condition, even though it is regularly subjected to intensive use. Factors such as the relatively barren, rugged watershed terrain, the nutrient-impoverished nature of watershed soils; high elevation; rigorous climate; steep, deep lake basin morphometry; effective sewage waste disposal; lake flushing resulting from substantial lake drawdown in summer; and replenishment of lake volume with low-temperature and low-nutrient inflow water all may contribute to the maintenance of exceptional lake quality and the continuance of Wallowa Lake as a pristine, oligotrophic environment.

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Accession: 005441148

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