Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Lake Lloyd Vincent

Located near the Texas-West Oklahoma state line, south of Shattuck, is Lake Lloyd Vincent. It is another small lake of 160 acres and a four-mile shoreline. It can be found in the Oklahoma DeLorme Atlas, P. 28, E-1.

Lake Lloyd Vincent with the Antelope Hills on the horizon.

The lake is rather unremarkable, but being the only water for many, many miles, it draws a respectable number of fishermen. I had probably a half-dozen fishermen with me on the lake. It is so notable for fishing, that the wildlife division said as many fishermen come to the lake from Kansas and Texas as from Oklahoma. I had one person speak of fond memories of swimming there in Shattuck Lake. That is a local nickname for the lake, a habit we’ve seen elsewhere, but it is indeed Lake Lloyd Vincent. A Google search for his name was fruitless, because there were thousands of them from all over the country. When I contacted the Division of Fisheries, I was told the lake was named for a retired wildlife commissioner. In the process, I also learned that Evans Chambers was also named for a wildlife commissioner. So, perhaps the famous lariat twirler was a grandfather of the commissioner. There can’t have been too many Evans Chambers around.

Still 15-miles away, I could see the Antelope Hills. These are very obvious buttes that rise 2,600-ft. above sea level, and sit in a large oxbow of the Canadian River. Being so conspicuous on a flat prairie, they served as a landmark for many people and purposes. They were mentioned by the Spanish explorer Coronado in his journal after having made camp near the hills in 1541. When they were claimed by Spain in 1682, they served as a property marker on the border between the American frontier and Mexico. They were claimed by France in 1800, but were acquired by the U.S. when they became part of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. In the mid-1800’s, they served as land marks for those trying to find their way to California to settle, or for the Gold Rush. In 1867 they were included in the lands granted to the Cheyenne and Arapaho, but Native Americans again lost out when the lands were taken from them to be included in the land run of 1892. The Antelope Hills then became part of the Oklahoma Territory.

Diamond Back Water Snake

I had a snake cross my path, and I followed long enough to get a picture. It was not at all pleased with my attention and kept diving. It couldn’t hold its breath long, but continued this practice until it got close to some grass along the shore and disappeared. There is an Oklahoma snake identification site (, and I sent a picture to them. They responded promptly to say that it was a nonpoisonous Diamond Back Water Snake.

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