Located in Lanark County, in eastern Ontario, Canada, Mississippi Lake is a series of basins in the Mississippi watershed. The Mississippi river flows through the village of Innisville and a designated wetland and bird sanctuary, before it widens into a series of "lakes" as it travels northeast. It becomes a river channel again, flowing through the towns of Carleton Place, Almonte and Pakenham, before emptying into the Ottawa River.
Once noted for its Pickerel/Walleye population, Mississippi Lake is now noted as a preferred destination for the skilled bass angler. The Mississippi is also home to a number of environmentally significant wetlands, a bird sanctuary and a bald eagle nesting site. In the early spring and late fall, many migratory waterfowl species, who spend their summers in the far north, stop over on Mississippi Lake to rest and fill up on small fish. Loons are a common sight throughout the open-water season. Because of their fragile reproductive habits, their numbers are closely watched. Boaters are reminded to steer clear of nesting areas and avoid creating wake near shore.
The MLA buoy program provides assistance to navigation by deploying approximately 50 buoys during the boating season. The MLA Buoy Marker Map indicates the general location of these buoys. CAUTION: remain at least 30 meters from these buoys as they indicate shallow water, and their position might vary depending upon weather and currents.
Historically, it was a source of life for nomadic Algonquin families. Early in the 1800s, the area around the present Carleton Place and Beckwith Township was surveyed and allotted by the Crown to British, Irish and Scottish immigrants and loyalists who moved north from the United States. Over time, landowners around the perimeter of the lake severed waterfront lots and sold them as recreational properties. Today, there are approximately 1,200 residential properties around the lake shore. More than sixty percent of these year-round residences. Most of these residents live on the private roads that surround the lake.
Mississippi Lake is unique among lakes in eastern Ontario in that it is less than an hour's drive from downtown a major city, Ottawa, the nation's capital. It is easily accessible for city-dwellers with cottages on the lake and increasingly, an easy commute for year-round residents.