I think I could easily live on a lake

I learned to swim in Lake Erie when it was crystal clear, before all the dead fish floated ashore. And on the road trip, we drove by or near so many beautiful lakes that obviously attracts locals and tourists.

I think the prettiest lake I’ve even been on is Pend Oreille in Sandpoint Idaho. It blew me away. The view in this pic is from atop Schweitzer Mountain, a great ski slope.


We’ve canoed on Bear Lake in the Kenai Peninsula and on Selawik Lake off Kotzebue Alaska, us and giant mosquitoes that ate us alive. We tired to concentrate on the beauty of the lake, but it was hard!

Bear Lake
Selawik Lake

We’ve done our fair share of Maine Lake living too, us and the loons, or us loons and the other loons is more like it. Rangely was where we hung out, too gorgeous for words.


New Hampshire lakes, check done. Winnipesaukee, around Sandwich and Center Harbor, and Pleasant Lake in New London NH. Lake Lure, North Carolina, done. There, the deal is pontoon boats – everyone has one. Such fun to tool around a lake in a pontoon boat.


Lake Tahoe, check done. I have not been to Lake Mead nor have I been on any other Great Lake other than Erie.

If you watch enough HGTV (yes I do) you’ll see all the House Hunters peeps looking on lakes. I think the beauty of the lake depends on how much power boating equipment is allowed. Some lakes ban it altogether. Some lakes are total yahoo lakes with drunks on motor boats. Pend Oreille seemed a magical in between. Yes please, find me a house there.

I also think the lake has to be big enough to have a house with a long view, not two feet across to the other shore. Who has a favorite lake and why? Would you live on a lake over the ocean?

24 thoughts on “I think I could easily live on a lake

  1. I have little lake experience, but stayed with friends at a 100+ year old family camp on one of the Finger Lakes. Absolutely gorgeous, with crystal clear cool water great for swimming, sailing, canoeing, etc. That convinced me that I could live on a lake, though most around here are more like bogs.

    1. That’s where lakes get gorgeous, up around the Finger Lakes. I mean so spectacular it takes your breath away. Maine lakes aren’t too shabby either. I’m not a fan of the lakes where it’s all slime on the bottom and your toes sink down a foot into mud and who knows what else.

  2. Winnepesaukee is too fancy for my liking – it has $10m houses on it today, ruining the place. Squam and Ossipee Lakes are much better. Don’t know Pleasant Lake in New London. The downside to lake living is off season when the lakes are empty. I’d live on a lake in the summer and the ocean in winter.

    1. Very true about the $10m houses. I’m not home now or else I’d find one and link it. I’ve seen ads for years for two houses side by side in Alton NH on the lake. Hideously out of sync with lake living. Ugly to boot. Can Someone find them for me? Thanks.

  3. I’m familiar with Pleasant Lake in NH. Nice, classy little lake with some very nice homes along it. Lake Sunapee is much larger and it, too, has some lovely homes. It also has an annual event with old ChrisCrafts and Gar-woods on parade. Years ago, I spent some time in Wolfeboro and on a Winnepesaukee island and found the lake too busy for me, especially on weekends. Romney’s lake house is on it.
    Being used to tides dictating water activities, initially I found the constant height of lakes quiet attractive, And swimming didn’t require getting used to the water as you turned blue from the cold. However, at the end of the day I was and still am an ocean girl. Lakes are far more bleak from late fall through spring and then there’s black fly season.
    Plus, lobsters and fried clams are better near the ocean.

    1. Forgot Sunapee. That is a nice lake too. Both Sunapee and Pleasant Lake are old school, the people who live there understand what a lake house is all about.

      Agree Winnepesaukee is Boston peeps on steroids. No thanks. I have an old Vineyard friend who has lived in Center Harbor for 40 years and the changes she’s seen she’s not happy about, other than her home, a modest one, is worth a heck of a lot more than it was when she bought it, thanks to Mass residents coming up to shop.

    1. Yes, that’s the pair of houses. I mean, what was the town thinking to allow those to be built in the first place? Is there no planning board, no footprint max? They are obscene in my opinion. Thanks for finding the link and posting it.

  4. I think I’ve said it before but I basically grew up in a log cabin on 200ft of beach in northern Michigan. Lake Michigan is the best lake, definitely the number one Great Lake. Nothing creepy to bite you. No tides to suck your little sailboat out to sea. Plenary of fish to eat. And if you go far enough north, not too much traffic. I would definitely live on a lake, I just don’t want to be that far away (as my childhood home) from decent grocery stores and general civilization. My mother had a huge garden –if I were running the garden we would starve!–and they bought animals at 4h to stock the freezer. 40 acres inland provided wood for the fire. It was seriously Wilderness Family! Winters were fierce, show drifts half way up the windows and doors. Lake Superior is also very nice, but iciest and even more remote.

    1. I LOVE LOVE LOVE when you tell us your childhood stories living as the Wilderness Family. Your parents were a rare breed I presume. How was their decision to live the way you did viewed by their friends/peers? Were they seen as strange or were people envious of living off the land on the lake?

      My bucket list includes seeing the upper regions of Lake Michigan, like Mackinac Island. The only Lake Michigan I’ve done is in Chicago on a boat taking an architecture tour. I don’t call that really being on Lake Michigan.

      1. We were definitely the Eccentric Oddballs. My dad retired from GM at 39, which is unusual. Leaving the rat race for our summer home. And then there were the lavish trips to NYC. Stanhope, limos, shopping for the year and walking to and from broadway shows or Lincoln center (from the Stanhope!! With three kids between 7-14-twin brothers three years younger than me. Every.Single.Year.) it was a bit hard to make sense of the dichotomy. My father had some wonderful gifts–good with numbers, investments, handy around the house. He also remained calm in most aggravating parental instances, with great tolerance and generosity towards ungrateful children. He modled the laws of abundance and gratitude–which eventually sunk in (for me, at least, of the three)

        1. Oh, and reach out when you travel to N Michigan, I know all the local goodies from Charlevoix north!

        2. Fascinating story. Was your mother totally on board with living in the summer camp and your father retiring so early? Sounds like, with her green thumb and talent having a huge garden, that she loved the summer camp life and perhaps was a motivating factor in your father’s decision to retire?

        3. My father felt like the auto industry was heading into a rocky patch in 1978, his next promotions were pats on the back and extra bottle of Chivas. (Alcholism was becoming an issue for him, too) He recognized the materialistic nature of our environment (basically the greenwich of Detroit) and decided to change the way his children grew up. I really don’t know if my mom was on board, but she was kind of old school in the sense that she (mostly) obeyed her husband….she was usually rather grumpy, I never considered that it could have been because of something other than me….hmmm. Forgiveness!

        4. One of my closest Vineyard friends grew up in Bloomfield Hills MI, her dad also GM in the day. She went to Cranbrook and was good friends with all the other GM family kids. She said it was a glorious upbringing although she mentioned more than once her mother was unhappy with the high level social life that was expected of her as the wife of a GM exec. Wives were a different breed in our parents time – they were far more dutiful, were happy being in the shadows of the man who brought home the bacon. That was my mother but she relished the tasks, adored entertaining and all that came with being The Good Wife! 🙂 At least that’s what she tells me! Who knows if she really was happy.

        5. Bloomfield Hills is where we lived….and I went back to Kingswood (girls side of Cranbrook) for freshman year. Leaving all my friends when I was 10 was tough. And Up North, we were neither here nor there–not locals, and summer friends were only around for six weeks. Going back didn’t work well either….only a handful of boarding students in a primarily day school.

          It was a little Mad Men-ish for the women, wasn’t it?

          I wonder if my dad worked with your friends dad…small world!

    1. What distinguishes the NV side versus the California side such that it would be your choice?
      Good luck. I hope you win, if I can’t.

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