Emerald Lake (Yukon)

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Emerald Lake
Emerald Lake, Yukon 3.jpg
Emerald Lake is located in Yukon
Emerald Lake
Emerald Lake
LocationYukon Territory, Canada
Coordinates60°15′58.8″N 134°45′02.6″W / 60.266333°N 134.750722°W / 60.266333; -134.750722

Emerald Lake is a lake in the southern Yukon, notable for its intense green colour. It is located on the South Klondike Highway at kilometre 117.5 (mile 73.5), measured from Skagway, Alaska. The colour derives from light reflecting off white deposits of marl, a mixture of clay and calcium carbonate,[1] at the bottom of the shallow waters.[2][3]

The high concentration of calcium carbonate in the water here comes from limestone gravels eroded from the nearby mountains and deposited here 14,000 years ago by the glaciers of the last ice age. Glacial erosion was likewise responsible for scooping out the shallow lakebed.[2]

Natural hypoxic conditions during the summer may contribute to carbonate deposition and marl formation.[3]

A wide view of Emerald Lake from the adjacent highway.


  1. ^ "Palaeos: The Vertebrates, Glossary". Archived from the original on 18 April 2010. Retrieved 15 March 2010.
  2. ^ a b Government of Yukon: Tourism and Culture, Cultural Services Branch (2007–2009). "Sights and Sites: Yukon Points of Interest Signage". Archived from the original on 15 June 2009. Retrieved 15 March 2010.
  3. ^ a b The Milepost. Augusta, Georgia, USA: Morris Communications. 2005. p. 721. ISBN 1-892154-17-X.

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