Lake Suwa

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Lake Suwa
諏訪湖
Suwako.jpg
Coordinates 36°02′54″N 138°05′03″E / 36.04833°N 138.08417°E / 36.04833; 138.08417Coordinates: 36°02′54″N 138°05′03″E / 36.04833°N 138.08417°E / 36.04833; 138.08417
Primary inflows 31 small rivers
Primary outflows Tenryū river
Basin countries Japan
Surface area 13.3 km²
Average depth 4.7 m (15 ft)
Max. depth 7.2 m (24 ft)
Shore length1 15.9 km
Surface elevation 759 m (2,989 ft)
Settlements Okaya
Suwa
Shimosuwa
1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.

Lake Suwa (諏訪湖 Suwa-ko?) is a lake in the central part of Nagano Prefecture, Japan. It ranks 24th in Japan in surface area.

Lake Suwa is the site of The God's Crossing (御神渡り o-miwatari?), an interesting natural phenomenon. The lake has a natural hot spring under the surface, so that when the top freezes in the winter, the lower waters are still warm and circulating. This results in pressure ridges forming in the ice, reaching heights of 30 cm or more. Local belief holds that the pressure ridges are formed by the gods crossing the lake, travelling between the various buildings of Suwa Taisha.

In fiction[edit]

In the movie Kagemusha by Akira Kurosawa, Lord Shingen is buried in the lake.

In Autobiography of a Geisha, Sayo Masuda tries to drown herself in the lake as a child, but hesitates because she believes a dragon inhabits it.

In the anime Rurouni Kenshin, legend holds of an "Elixir of Immortality" that can be found somewhere in or around Lake Suwa. The main characters search for the elixir in the final season of the series and are followed by a band of evil German knights, seeking it for world domination.

In the curtain shooter series Touhou, the goddess Suwako is a reference to Lake Suwa.

See also[edit]