Hamilton Lake Domain

Hamilton, New Zealand

Hamilton Lake Domain


Lake Rotoroa or Hamilton Lake (officially Lake Rotoroa / Hamilton Lake) is a lake in Hamilton, Waikato, North Island, New Zealand. It has a surface area of about 54 hectares (133 acres) and an average depth of 2.4 metres (7 ft 10 in). It is the home of the Hamilton Yacht Club, which holds regular sailing in the summer.

Lake Rotoroa formed, like most of the lakes in the central Waikato (Hamilton) basin, about 20,000 years ago, after the Waikato changed course to flow out at Port Waikato, rather than at Thames. It was a high-energy, braided river carrying large volumes of volcanogenic sediment (Hinuera Formation), which was deposited over and around a pre-existing hilly landscape to form an alluvial plain. In the process of depositing the alluvium, small basins were formed adjacent to the hills, and water then accumulated from local drainage and groundwater in these small basins. At Rotoroa, initially two small shallow lakes were formed with clear water in an embayment of the partially enclosing hills, a low spur off the hills separating them. Peat growth in the adjacent Rukuhia bog to the west and south then expanded and deepened as net precipitation increased as climate became warmer and wetter in the region, lifting regional water tables. The peat then encroached on to the alluvial dam holding in the two shallow lakes, forming a second storey barrier on top so that the two lakes coalesced into a single deeper lake with brownish peat-stained water, submerging the low spur.

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