Lake Mary (Arizona)

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Lake Mary
LocationCoconino County, Arizona
Coordinates35°4′22.1″N 111°31′27.2″W / 35.072806°N 111.524222°W / 35.072806; -111.524222Coordinates: 35°4′22.1″N 111°31′27.2″W / 35.072806°N 111.524222°W / 35.072806; -111.524222
Primary inflowsWalnut Creek
Primary outflowsWalnut Creek
Basin countriesUnited States
Surface area600 acres (240 ha)
Average depth38 ft (12 m)
Surface elevation6,895 ft (2,102 m)
Sunflowers at Lake Mary, 2010

Lake Mary may refer to one of two reservoirs in northern Arizona southeast of Flagstaff. The name may also be used to refer to the two lakes as a whole. The pair of lakes impound the intermittent Walnut Creek upstream from Walnut Canyon. Recreational facilities at both lakes are maintained under the authority of the Coconino National Forest.

Upper Lake Mary[edit]

Upper Lake Mary, the furthest upstream of the two lakes, is formed by a small earthen dam on Walnut Creek. The lake is long and narrow, with a maximum length of about 5 miles (8 km), and a maximum width of about 2,000 feet (610 meters). During dry seasons the lake will narrow and shorten. The lake is named after Mary Riordan, a daughter of the wealthy lumber barons who built the lake in 1905 for a water supply for Flagstaff.[1]

Upper Lake Mary contains nine fish species for angling, including black crappie, bluegill, green sunfish, channel catfish, northern pike and walleye. Largemouth bass, yellow bass and yellow perch are sometimes reported to be found in the lake as well. Also golden shiners and fathead minnows are bait fish that are found in Upper Lake Mary. [2]

Lower Lake Mary[edit]

Lower Lake Mary

Lower Lake Mary, the furthest downstream of the two lakes is located just downstream of the upper lake. It is the smaller of two lakes, reaching a maximum length of 3 miles (5 km) during wet seasons. At its maximum capacity, the lake fills the valley from the small earthen dam at its head to the foot of the dam holding back Upper Lake Mary. During dry seasons, however, the lake has a tendency to dry up completely.[3]

Due to its tendency to dry up, the Lower Lake Mary does not have the water sports appeal of its upstream sibling. The lake is regularly stocked with rainbow trout during wet years. Any fish species that is found in Upper Lake Mary can be found as well as a result of Upper Lake Mary spilling.[4]

Both lakes are also home to populations of elk and deer. The waters themselves attract various bird species including the great blue heron and the bald eagle. During the warmer summer months, the region becomes a popular destination for birdwatchers.

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ ""
  3. ^ "Lower Lake Mary". United States Forest Service. Retrieved 2008-05-27.
  4. ^ {{

External links[edit]