Ness, Loch (lŏkh) [key], lake, 22 mi (35 km) long, Highland, N central Scotland, in the Great Glen. More than 700 ft (213 m) deep and ice free, it is fed by the Oich and other streams and drained by the Ness to the Moray Firth. It forms part of the Caledonian Canal. By volume, Loch Ness is the largest freshwater lake in Great Britain.
Since Dec., 1933, when newspapers published accounts of a "monster," 40 to 50 ft (12–15 m) long, said to have been seen in the loch, there have been several alleged sightings; the legend dates back to A.D. 565. As a result of the publicity, Loch Ness has become a major tourist attraction. In 1994 a famous 1934 photograph was revealed to be a hoax.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
More on Loch Ness from Infoplease:
See more Encyclopedia articles on: British and Irish Physical Geography