According to the Acadia National Park website, “in Maine all [inland] surface waters are considered to be ponded and are referred to as ponds.” The 437-acre Eagle Lake, then, is the largest ‘pond’ wholly within the boundaries of the national park. It has an average depth of 43 feet, and a maximum depth of 110 feet.
Acadia’s three ponds that go deeper than 70 feet are oligotrophic (lacking plants and plant nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus, but rich in dissolved oxygen). All three also are water supplies for surrounding towns: Eagle Lake/Bar Harbor, Jordan Pond/Seal Harbor, and Long Pond/Southwest Harbor, and because of this, swimming is not allowed.
Motors over 10 horsepower also are prohibited on Eagle Lake, but fishing for landlocked salmon, brook trout, and togue (lake trout), is allowed with the proper license. In the 1880s the paddlewheel steamer Wauwinnet traversed the lake, but today most activity in the area takes place on the surrounding carriage roads instead of on the water.
Eagle Lake reportedly was given its name when Thomas Cole, one of the early Hudson River artists whose work inspired the rusticators, saw an eagle there in the mid-1840s.