The waters of the lake were dark blue, except where the mineral springs gave it a sea green color in the western shallows. Esmel, as a whole, was unusually deep, so much so that its depth had never been successfully measured. The deepest parts were near the eastern and southern shores; near the northern shores, the depth was close to 100 feet (30 meters), but after only a half mile, the bottom dropped severely.
The waters of the eastern half of the lake were especially cold, because of snow-melt from the mountains, but the western shallows were fed by several hot mineral springs. These springs were predominantly in Akarav's Bay and filled the air with a strong scent of sulfur.
The lake was suitable for boating, swimming, and fishing. The waters were calm, as storms were relatively rare here. The region around the lake was thus a resort area. To not disturb the tourists, most fishing was done away from the region of Esmeltaran.
Located on the eastern half of Amn and southeast of the city Esmeltaran, Lake Esmel was a way-point that connected the Sea of Swords to the Snakewood and the Troll Mountains. It was directly fed by four rivers from three sides and indirectly by the waters of the Esmelflow, rivers flowing down from both the Cloud Peaks in the north and the Small Teeth in the south. It was also fed by hot springs on its fourth side.
Flora & FaunaEdit
Because of the wide variety of temperatures in the lake, its waters were full of a wide variety of fishes. One species of fish, the dunchow was only to be found in these waters. It was served as a special dish at most inns in Esmeltaran and was a delicacy throughout Amn.
There were many small farming and fishing settlements around the whole lake, each with no more than a couple hundred citizens. Two-thirds of the population of Amn lived west of Lake Esmel, and the best estates in Amn were located on its shores. The most notable locations around the lake were the following:
- Akarav's Bay
- This northwestern bay of the lake was where the greatest concentration of hot springs were found.
- Amstel River
- One of the major rivers feeding the lake, the Amstel River carried with it much barge traffic from the east.
- Esmel River
- This river was the outlet of Lake Esmel and flowed to the ocean.
- This was possibly the most beautiful city of Amn.
- This was the southernmost river feeding the lake.
- The Scimitar
- This resort community is located on a scimitar-shaped peninsula on Akarav's Bay.
- This was also one of the four rivers feeding the lake.
Rumors & LegendsEdit
A monster (or several monsters) were rumored to live at the bottom of Lake Esmel. This creature was called "Esmelda" by the locals. Many had claimed to have seen the creature, and it was blamed for the loss of several boats over the years, though most people did not believe the tales. Some suspected that the supposed sightings were simply of the red dragon Balagos.
While it was true that Balagos often bathed in Lake Esmel, the "Monster of the Lake" was actually more than a dozen pythosaurs who lived in the deepest, coldest waters. They had been living in the lake since the days of the Creator races.
After the Spellplague, most people still did not understand that pythosaurs lived in the lake, and claims of a powerful dragon lairing there persisted. Some claimed that the dragon was red, while others said that it was copper.
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 Scott Haring (1988). Empires of the Sands. (TSR, Inc), pp. 16–17. ISBN 0-8803-8539-1.
- ↑ 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 2.17 2.18 2.19 2.20 Steven E. Schend (1997). Lands of Intrigue: Book Two: Amn. (TSR, Inc), pp. 44–45. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 153. ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Bruce R. Cordell, Ed Greenwood, Chris Sims (August 2008). Forgotten Realms Campaign Guide. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 93. ISBN 978-0-7869-4924-3.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 Scott Haring (1988). Empires of the Sands. (TSR, Inc), p. 10. ISBN 0-8803-8539-1.
- ↑ Ed Greenwood, Sean K. Reynolds, Skip Williams, Rob Heinsoo (June 2001). Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting 3rd edition (Map). (Wizards of the Coast). ISBN 0-7869-1836-5.
- ↑ Steven E. Schend (1997). Lands of Intrigue: Book Two: Amn. (TSR, Inc), p. 38. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
- ↑ Steven E. Schend (1997). Lands of Intrigue: Book Two: Amn. (TSR, Inc), p. 3. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
- ↑ Steven E. Schend (1997). Lands of Intrigue: Book Two: Amn. (TSR, Inc), p. 47. ISBN 0-7869-0697-9.
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Scott Haring (1988). Empires of the Sands. (TSR, Inc), p. 4. ISBN 0-8803-8539-1.