Introduction | How Does Water Get In and Out of Lakes?
Who Needs Lakes? | Hold Rivers and Lakes in Your Hand!

How does the water get into a lake?
Small streams and large rivers bring water into lakes. The water they carry comes from precipitation and melted snow and ice.

How long does water spend in a lake?
It depends on the lake! A drop of water spends an average of 100 years in a lake before taking its next trip in the water cycle.

How does water get out of a lake?
Water can leave a lake in two different ways. It may evaporate from the surface of the lake. That’s when the Sun’s energy turns some water into a gas called water vapor. Or, water may leave a lake in a river that drains extra water away.