Waughop Lake

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Waughop Lake
Location Lakewood, Pierce County, Washington, United States
Coordinates 47°10′13″N 122°33′55″W / 47.1704°N 122.5653°W / 47.1704; -122.5653Coordinates: 47°10′13″N 122°33′55″W / 47.1704°N 122.5653°W / 47.1704; -122.5653
Primary inflows groundwater
Primary outflows none
Basin countries United States
Surface area 33 acres (13 ha)
Average depth 7 ft (2.1 m)

Waughop Lake is a lake less than 1.6 km (1.0 mi) east of Steilacoom in Pierce County, Washington, United States. The lake lies within Fort Steilacoom Park, in the city of Lakewood, Washington. Waughop Lake has a surface area of approximately 33 acres (130,000 m2) and a mean depth of 7 feet (2.1 m). The lake is fed by groundwater and has no surface drainage channels.

The lake is named after Dr. John Wesley Waughop, former superintendent of the Washington State Hospital for the Insane. The hospital, now known as Western State Hospital, lies across from the park on Steilacoom Boulevard SW. The lake is circled by a 9/10 mile paved loop trail.

Waughop Lake is refilled with trout that, unless caught, die within a few weeks. One of the primary researchers of this lake, Michele La Fontaine, has done studies on the algae and dissolved oxygen content. The depth fluctuates about 2 ft a year, gaining 2 feet in winter and losing 2 feet due to evaporation. The algae is fed by nitrogen, supplied by the duck droppings which the lake has plenty of. There are serious algae blooms, and it is not advisable to come into contact with the water.

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