Spotted Lake is a major attraction to visitors to Osoyoos, BC. in the South Okanagan. You cannot miss this historic landmark as you drive along the highway just west of the city.
The scientific term describes this as a saline endorheic alkali lake.
That is a mouthful!
What actually happens with the lake is that it is comprised of many different and highly concentrated minerals. Magnesium, calcium and sodium sulfates are some of the largest minerals included here.
In the summer months most of the lake water evaporates and leaves the minerals behind. These minerals crystallize and large spots begin to appear. The colours will vary as each spot will change as the mineral composition changes at different times throughout the summer.
This colourful lake, known to the first nations people as 'Khiluk', was considered a sacred site. The waters were therapeutic and had healing powers to them. There were even truces made between tribes at war so that the warriors could visit the lake and heal their different wounds.
Another historic fact was that the minerals were used to make ammunition during World War 1!
The lake is on private property and there is a fence that protects it from public access.
You can get a good view from the highway. When I stopped here there were quite a few vehicles parked to the side.
I wasn't alone in grabbing my camera and taking some photos of this incredible lake.
Take Hwy 3 about 9 km west of Osoyoos to view these incredible amoeba shaped spots.
Make sure to come through between June and September as this is the best time to view the lake.
Sign from Hwy 3 near Osooyos overlooking Spotted Lake
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An Okanagan Vineyard