The Great Lakes are a chain of deep freshwater lakes in eastern central North America, containing Michigan, Erie, Lakes Superior, Huron, and Ontario. They are one of the immense feature of the continent and of the earth. Although Lake Biakal in Russia has a bigger volume of water, the combined area of the Great Lakes in the range of 94,250 square miles or 244,106 square kilometers, it represents the biggest surface of fresh water in the world, covering a zone exceeding that of the United Kingdom.
Their drainage basin of around 295,710 square miles expands approximately 690 miles from north to south and around 860 miles from Lake Superior in the west to Lake Ontario to the east. With the exception of Lake Michigan, the lakes give a natural border between Canada and the United States, a wilderness that was settled by a boundary waters treaty in 1990.
Individually, the lakes rank among the 14 biggest in the world. They assumed a central role in the European colonization and advancement of North America and for decades has attracted to individuals and industry. Lake Erie and Ontario and the southern segment of Lake Michigan are currently ringed with a large population concentration.
The Great Lakes from the western part of the bigger St. Lawrence River. This river extends generally eastbound from the St. Louis River in Minnesota, which flows into Lake Superior, through the lakes and the St. Lawrence River and empties into the Atlantic Ocean off the Gulf of St. Lawrence. For a system of eastern Lake Ontario, see Seaway and St. Lawrence River. The St. Lawrence River is a body of water that allows the passage of deep water between the Great Lakes and Atlantic Ocean. It includes a series of man made trenches, dams and locks, and is viewed as a standout amongst the most vital shipping routes on the planet.