Lake Istokpoga

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Lake Istokpoga
Lake Istokpoga.jpg
Location of Lake Istokpoga in Florida, USA.
Location of Lake Istokpoga in Florida, USA.
Lake Istokpoga
Location of Lake Istokpoga in Florida, USA.
Location of Lake Istokpoga in Florida, USA.
Lake Istokpoga
LocationHighlands County, Florida
Coordinates27°22′N 81°17′W / 27.367°N 81.283°W / 27.367; -81.283Coordinates: 27°22′N 81°17′W / 27.367°N 81.283°W / 27.367; -81.283
Primary inflowsArbuckle Creek, Josephine Creek
Primary outflowsC41 canal
Basin countriesUnited States
Max. length10 miles (16 km)
Max. width5 miles (8 km)
Surface area26,762.9 acres (108 km2)
Average depth4 feet (1.2 m)
Max. depth10 feet (3.0 m)
Surface elevation37.5–39.5 ft (11.4–12.0 m)
IslandsBig, Bumble Bee
SettlementsLorida, Sebring, Lake Placid

Lake Istokpoga is a 26,762.9-acre (108.306 km2) freshwater lake in Highlands County, Florida.[1] It is fed by two creeks, Arbuckle Creek and Josephine Creek. The oblong-shaped lake is approximately 5 miles (8.0 km) wide by 10 miles (16 km) long. It is considered the fifth largest lake in the state of Florida.[2] Despite its area, it is very shallow, with an average depth of only 4 feet (1.2 m).[3] Maximum depth is 10 feet (3.0 m). As a result, boaters must be cautious to not become stranded in muck near the shore line. Bass and pontoon boats are the most commonly used watercraft, with some use of airboats. With such shallowness, this lake is extremely dangerous for boaters during windstorms, as the waves get quite high.

Boating and fishing are popular activities at this lake. There are at least half a dozen fish camps on Lake Istokpoga. Several of these fish camps book visitors for fishing trips and they also have cabins and hook up for campers, for overnight stays. The amenities on the lake are 5 public boat ramps and 2 public parks, one on the lake's north side and the other on the south east corner. Most of the shoreline is undeveloped and there are two islands, Big and Bumble Bee, in the lake's interior. Some residential properties and private boat docks and beaches dot areas on the shore.

Local legend is that the word Istokpoga is of the Seminole language meaning "a lake where someone was killed in the water"[4] because a group of Seminole Indians attempted to cross the lake and were bogged in the mire and swallowed by whirlpools.

Lake Istokpoga serves as a home for the snail kite.[5]


  1. ^ "Lake Istokpoga - Florida Atlas of Lakes Program Waterbody". University of South Florida. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  2. ^ "Lake Istokpoga". Friends of Istokpoga Lake Association, Inc. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  3. ^ "Lake Istokpoga, Florida - Community and Visitors Guide". Lakes Online. Retrieved 5 September 2014.
  4. ^ Jones, E.V.W. (Nov 3, 1937). "Indians gave many Florida towns the present names". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. p. 4. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
  5. ^ "Endangered Birds". Friends of Istokpoga. Retrieved 5 September 2014.

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