Torch Lake (Houghton County, Michigan)

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Torch Lake
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Torch Lake
Location Osceola Township, Houghton County, Michigan
Coordinates 47°09′30″N88°25′30″W / 47.15833°N 88.42500°W / 47.15833; -88.42500 Coordinates: 47°09′30″N88°25′30″W / 47.15833°N 88.42500°W / 47.15833; -88.42500
Primary inflows Traprock River
Basin  countriesUnited States
Max. length6 mi (9.7 km)
Max. width1.5 mi (2.4 km)
Surface area2,659 acres (11 km2)
Max. depth120 ft (37 m)
Surface elevation600 feet (180 m) [1]
Settlements Lake Linden

Torch Lake is an approximately 2,700-acre (11 km2) lake lying mostly within Torch Lake Township with portions within Osceola and Schoolcraft townships in Houghton County in the U.S. state of Michigan. The lake is fed by the Traprock River.

Contents

The village of Lake Linden at the north end of the lake was once the site of the largest copper milling operation in North America. About 200 million short tons (180×10^6 t) of copper mill stamp sands were dumped into Torch Lake itself, filling about 20 percent of the lake's volume. The Environmental Protection Agency believes the contaminated sediments to be 70 feet (21 m) thick in some areas, and surface sediments contain up to 2,000 parts per million (ppm) of copper.

The lake is about five miles (8.0 km) east-northeast of Houghton and is approximately six miles (9.7 km) long and 1 12 miles (2.4 km) wide at 47°09′N88°25′W / 47.150°N 88.417°W / 47.150; -88.417 . The lake has a total surface area of 2,659 acres (11 km2), and a maximum depth of 120 feet (37 m). A channel drains from the lake south into Torch Bay, which opens into Portage Lake.

See also

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