Earth Snapshot of Nile River
Lake Nasser and the Nile River, Egypt and Sudan – January 23rd, 2009
The construction of the Aswan High Dam across the waters of the Nile River, between 1958 and 1970, created Lake Nasser (right).
Lake Nasser is a vast reservoir in southern Egypt and northern Sudan. Strictly, “Lake Nasser” refers only to the much larger portion of the lake that is in Egyptian territory (83% of the total), with the Sudanese preferring to call their smaller body of water Lake Nubia.
The lake is some 550 km long and 35 km across at its widest point, which is near the Tropic of Cancer. It covers a total surface area of 5,250 km² and has a storage capacity of some 157 km³ of water.
The two smaller bodies of water (left) are the Toshka Lakes, created to allow water levels higher than 178 m in Lake Nasser to be drained off.
The southern tip of Lake Nasser, below the Sudanese border, appears green with algae, whilst the northern part, in Egypt, appears clear of algae and sediments. An algal bloom is also present in one of the Toshka Lakes.