Nechako Reservoir

Nechako Reservoir

The Nechako Reservoir, sometimes called the Ootsa Lake Reservoir, is a hydroelectric reservoir in British Columbia, Canada that was formed by a diversion of the Nechako River through the Kitimat Ranges of the Coast Mountains to sea level at Kemano to provide power for the aluminum smelter at Kitimat. It was one of the biggest reservoirs built in Canada to date, until the completion of the Columbia Treaty Dams and the W.A.C. Bennett Dam that created Lake Williston.

The creation of the reservoir flooded the series of lakes which typified the upper Nechako basin and in the process rendered the Quanchus Range, which lies between the north and south arms of the reservoir, a virtual island. The names of lakes amalgamated into the reservoir are perpetuated as names for the various stretches of water. The north arm includes Ootsa Lake, Whitesail Lake, and Whitesail Reach, the south arm Eutsuk Lake, Natalkuz Lake, Tetachuck Lake and others. Because Ootsa Lake is the largest of the original lakes its name is sometimes used for the whole reservoir, though the official name remains Nechako Reservoir.

Tweedsmuir North Provincial Park and Protected Area and Entiako Provincial Park both border the reservoir.

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