Lot (river)

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Cahors Pont Valentré.jpg
The Lot in Cahors
Country France
Basin features
Main source Cévennes
1,499 m (4,918 ft)
44°30′54″N 3°47′05″E / 44.51493°N 3.78462°E / 44.51493; 3.78462
River mouth Garonne
44°19′0″N 0°20′6″E / 44.31667°N 0.33500°E / 44.31667; 0.33500 (Garonne-Lot)Coordinates: 44°19′0″N 0°20′6″E / 44.31667°N 0.33500°E / 44.31667; 0.33500 (Garonne-Lot)
Progression GaronneAtlantic Ocean
Basin size 11,254 km2 (4,345 sq mi)
Physical characteristics
Length 481 km (299 mi)
  • Average rate:
    155 m3/s (5,500 cu ft/s)

The Lot, pronounced: [lɔt], originally the Olt (Occitan: Òlt; Latin: Oltis), is a river in France. It is a right tributary of the Garonne. It rises in the Cévennes, flowing west through Quercy, where it flows into the Garonne near Aiguillon, a total distance of 481 kilometres (299 mi). It gives its name to the departments of Lot and Lot-et-Garonne.

The Lot is prone to flooding in the winter and spring.[1]

Olt is also the name of a river in Romania (Romanian: Olt; German: Alt; Latin: Aluta or Alutus, Turkish: Oltu, Ancient Greek: Ἄλυτος Alytos).

Main tributaries[edit]

Departments and towns[edit]

The Lot flows through the following departments and towns:

Canalized portions[edit]


The river was used for transport as early as the 12th century when 11 flash locks were installed between Penne-d'Agenais and Fumel. A reliable route was not provided until the 17th century when Jean-Baptiste Colbert ordered new works. By 1776, the river had 12 locks.[1] New construction was begun in 1835 for some 297 kilometres (185 mi) and 76 locks, connecting Le Moulin d'Olt at Entraygues to the Garonne at Nicole. Four tunnels were included at this time with lengths from 139 to 364 metres (456 to 1,194 ft). Railway competition caused the abandonment of Lot navigation in 1926. Over the next 60 years, there were no repairs or maintenance of the canal. Repairs in the Lower Lot began in the end of the 1990s.[1]

The lower Lot[edit]

This portion of the Lot[1] is a 71.5-kilometre (44.4 mi) route, with 7 locks, from Nicole to Lustrac (commune of Trentels).[2] The lower Lot is open to traffic and is being extended upstream with the objective of some day being connected to the upper Lot.[1]

En route[edit]

The upper river[edit]

This portion of the Lot[1] is a 72.5-kilometre (45.0 mi) route, with 17 locks, from Luzech to Larnagol.[2] It was reopened to boats in May 1990.[1]

En route[edit]

Canalized Lot
Entire Lot - origin to Garonne

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g McKnight, Hugh (2005). Cruising French Waterways, 4th Edition. Sheridan House. ISBN 9781574092103. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Jefferson, David (2009). Through the French Canals. Adlard Coles Nautical. p. 275. ISBN 978-1-4081-0381-4. 

External links[edit]