Loch Ness

The Loch Ness Monster

Loch Ness

Loch Ness is the biggest body of fresh water in the United Kingdom, although not the greatest by surface area. Its staggering depth, to over 700 ft and length of 23 miles ensures it contains, by far, the greatest volume of water.

There are two main things that you should know about Loch Ness. First that because of its huge volume the lake is resistant to temperature change (It always sits between 4 and 6 degrees Celsius), in the summer this means that swimming is always going to be “refreshing”, but the flip side to this is that the loch will not freeze during the winter months.

Secondly, because it never freezes it has always been used as a transport link through the region. The earliest written accounts from the area tell of people using it for boat transport. This theme has continued through to modern times with Loch Ness being an important part of the Caledonian Canal, a great chain of waterways stretching through the middle of the country, which allows perpetual sailing from the North Sea to the Atlantic Ocean. The construction of the canal was a miracle of engineering for the time and taking into account inflation it cost more than the lunar landing to complete.

The severe temperatures experienced in this area from time to time has meant that the phenomenon of the loch not freezing over has caused some confusion with the local population, as they did not have access to the scientific knowledge that we take for granted today. Up until Victorian times it was believed that a magical force was at work on the loch and people still used to come to the loch to drink the water, believing it to be a cure for common ailments. Those who were diagnosed with bronchitis were often prescribed with a twice-daily swim in the freezing waters of the loch. Needless to say this health cure was not entirely successful.