ONTARIO, LAHE. The most eastern and the smallest of the five great lakes of North America. It lies between latitudes 43° 10' and 44° 8' N., and longitudes 76° 30' and SO° W., and is en closed by the Canadian Province of Ontario and New York State (Map: United Stales, K 2). With a water surface of 7240 miles,it is less than one-fourth as large as Lake Superior. It is 190 miles long, 55 wide in its widest part, and about 480 miles in circumference. Its distinctive by drographic basin is 28,84n square miles in area. The mean elevation of its surface is 247 feet above tide water in the Atlantic. its maximum depth is 738 feet. its approximate mean depth is 300 feet, and the depth of its basin below the sea level is 491 feet, the bottom of the lake being lower in relation to sea level than that of any other of the Great Lakes, The water discharge of the Saint Lawrence basin has been found to he slightly less than half its rainfall; Lake On tario. lying at the foot of the chain of lakes, has naturally the largest discharge. 300,000 cubic feet per second, as compared with 265,000 for Lake Eric, 235,000 for lakes Huron and Michi gan, and 86,000 for Lake Superior. The lake is sufficiently deep throughout for vessels of the lar gest tonnage. Its shores are generally very flat
and have little attractive scenery, except in the bay of (Mute. a long, crooked arm, which ex tends about 50 miles into the land, on the north east side of the lake. The lake freezes only a few miles from the shore, which is doe in part to the frequent agitation of its waters by violent storms, and also to a persistent surface current estab lished through its centre which moves to the east with return currents and eddies along the shores and about the islands. This surface current is due to the fact that the larger axis of the lake coincides with the direction of the prevailing westerly winds. There are many eonvenient har bors and ports, chief among which are Kingston. Port Hope, Cobourg. Toronto, and Hamilton on the Canadian shore, and Oswego. Saeketts Harbor, and Charlotte in New York. Many lighthouses along the coasts facilitate navi gation, and the lake is connected with Lake Eric by the Welland Canal, with the Erie Canal and the Hudson River by the Oswego Canal, and with the Ottawa River by the Rideau Canal.