Lake Roosevelt has more than 600 miles of shoreline.

This ribbon of shore ranges from 100 to 300 feet wide when the reservoir is full—and even wider when water levels are lower. Recreation was not one of the purposes authorized by Congress when Grand Coulee Dam was constructed and Lake Roosevelt came into being.

Today, however, between 1 and 1.5 million people recreate around Lake Roosevelt each year. Most of this recreation occurs in the summer when the weather is hot and camping, boating, fishing and swimming opportunities abound.

To support recreational needs, the lake is generally brought to an elevation level of 1280 or above by July, and remains between 1280 and 1290 throughout the summer. This assures that boat launches, campgrounds and swimming areas can be optimally used.

Between 1992 and 2002 there were serious drought and flood control conditions. Regardless of these conditions, the lake did refill in time to meet summer recreational needs. Click here to see the water elevations graph for those years.

Learn more about the many recreational opportunities associated with Lake Roosevelt in the Recreation section.