Discover the Oldest Man-Made Lake in Oklahoma

Important Points:

Talawanda Lake Number One is the earliest artificial lake in Oklahoma.

The location of Talawanda Lake Number 1 is north of McAlester, Oklahoma.

Compared to Talawanda Lake Number 2, Talawanda Lake Number 1 is far cleaner.

Oklahoma used to only have a small number of natural lakes, most of which were quite small, despite currently having over 200 lakes. Given that Oklahoma has more rivers than lakes, it should come as no surprise that the majority of the natural lakes in the state are essentially just segments of rivers. The first lake was constructed in the early 1900s to supply neighboring counties with water.After this initial lake, several more appeared and developed into locations for fishing and other recreational water activities.

Talawanda Lake Number One is the earliest artificial lake in Oklahoma. Situated on just 101 acres, it’s one of the state’s smaller lakes, having been constructed in 1902.

Where Is Talawanda Lake Number 1?

In Pittsburg County, Talawanda Lake Number 1 is situated not far north of McAlester, Oklahoma. Using I-40 E and OK-375, the travel from Oklahoma City takes around two hours. Tannehill Road leads to E Mitchell Road, which merges into D4060 Road—the road that leads to the lake—from OK-375. There is additional access to Talwanda Lake Number 2, which is close by, via D4060 Road.

The History of Talawanda Lake Number 1

Since Oklahoma is mostly a river state, there aren’t many natural lakes in the state. The majority of Oklahoma’s natural lakes are oxbow lakes due to the state’s numerous rivers. Oxbow lakes typically arise organically due to erosion and the passage of time. Because oxbow lakes are just rivers that have been isolated from the main water source, they have a U-shaped appearance and resemble rivers more.

An oxbow lake, which is a small area of still water, is left behind by the procedure. These unique lakes are almost invariably found by the river that contributed to their formation. The state is home to 62 oxbow lakes that are at least ten acres in size.

Playa lakes, sometimes known as dry lakes, are located in Oklahoma. These arid lake bottoms, like Utah’s salt flats, are only wet after rain. Oklahoma is home to over 600 of these naturally occurring lakes, the bulk of which are found in the panhandle.

There was a push to start building lakes in the early 20th century because the state lacked many natural lakes. The primary goal of damming rivers was to build reservoirs that would provide neighboring counties with potable water. Although Talawanda Lake Number 1 was originally intended for that use, no county currently uses it for municipal water.

What To Do On Oklahoma’s Oldest Man-Made Lake?

The main draw to Talawanda Lake Number 1 is fishing. When compared to the neighboring Talawanda Lake Number 2, it has fairly good water clarity. It’s somewhat of a hidden gem because not many people go to this tiny, unrecognized lake. Due to its remote location, this site is ideal for fishing and offers a serene and private atmosphere.

The lake is widely known for its abundance of crappie and for producing some huge largemouth bass. By Talawanda Lakes Nos. 1 and 2, there is a playground, picnic area, and boat ramp. The lake is a terrific spot to throw a line in a beautiful setting, even though swimming and other recreational water sports aren’t typically done there. There is an abundance of vegetation around the shoreline that offers bass, crappie, and bluegill hiding places.

What To Do Around Talawanda Lake Number 1?

Arrowhead State Park is a great place to go if you’re in the region and need something to do. It’s close to Lake Eufaula, a short drive north of Talawanda Lake Number 1. It’s an excellent spot to see wildlife because there are many of deer, bunnies, and wild turkeys there. Additionally, there is a campground close by and an on-site marina because it is right on the edge of Lake Eufaula. Since the park is spread out over 102,500 acres, you won’t run out of things to do.

Krebs, a community known for its fine dining and sometimes dubbed Oklahoma’s Little Italy, is also close by. Pete’s Place and Lovera’s Italian Grocery are worth visiting if you’re in the neighborhood. Since 1925, Pete’s Place has operated as a company. Pete Prichard, an Italian immigrant, started serving beer to customers after suffering an injury in the mines. Following the success of his Choc Beer, Pete started serving cuisine out of his house, which is still used as a restaurant today. With sliding doors separating the dining areas, it offers a distinctive dining experience where visitors are given ample platters of salads, cheeses, peppers, and other appetizers, followed by some truly delicious main courses. Definitely worth a visit if you’re in the neighborhood.