Lost Lake Geographic Location in Cairne | World Anvil

Lost Lake

West of the Barren Ridge lies a cold and lonely location known as Lost Lake. This is an endorheic lake that contains an extremely high level of salinity and does not outflow to any other bodies of water. The surrounding area is fairly bereft of life, and still, giving it a desolate appearance and a long and tragic history that only serves to further the sense of despair that seems to hang thick around the banks of this location.


This is the smallest of the large lakes in the southern lakeland region of Cairne, though it still measures approximately two hundred kilometers in length. Resting in the shadow of Barren Ridge and far enough south that the temperature remains constantly cold leaves this grey vista without any direct light most of the year. This has resulted in a lack of vegetation aside from some sturdy, and heavily mutated muhly grass that seems to dominate the region. The high salt content of the lake itself leads to mineral deposits along the banks and accumulating on anything that remains in the water long enough. These mineral deposits take on a deep violet to black hue due to the absorption and concentration of Void energy, and leave the water and these deposits highly toxic and dangerous to touch.


This area is entirely barren. Between the high salinity of the water and the lack of other foods, there is little reason for life to even attempt to flourish here. There have been reports of small white lights that hover above the water in the evenings that have been observed to act in an almost intelligent manner, drifting closer to observers and moving about their camps as if to study them, but no other interactions have been seen beyond these fairly innocuous encounters.

Localized Phenomena

The Ghostlights, as they have come to be called, are small motes of white light that appear over the surface of the lake in the evenings. Many claim these are the spirits of the people who have perished here in the waters of the lake and whose bodies were never recovered. Lost Lake has the unfortunate reputation of being a location associated with a great many suicides over the years, leading to several nicknames for the location such as "End of the Road". The constant cold, grey scenery, the lack of direct light, the black, mirror still water and utter silence of the place settles in quickly as one journeys there, so it is easy to see how such a place could garner such a reputation. Many spiritualists have made the trek there to try and determine once and for all if this is true, however, they are all quickly overcome with a strange and overwhelming spiritual force that causes a visceral reaction in them, most not able to get within a hundred meters of the shores. This anomaly remains unexplained, as do the Ghostlights themselves, though many suspect there may be another power or entity at work in this location and causing these reactions by some unknown power or ability.


This region remains at a fairly constant zero to negative twenty three degrees, though the high salt content keeps the water and immediate area free of ice.

Fauna & Flora

While the region is devoid of animal life, there are some strains of plant life that remain, though it is changed over the course of the years due to exposure. The most prevalent of these is the Black Muhly which covers a large swath of the banks of the lake. These perennial plants range from grey to violet to black and grow in clusters of grassy mounds.    Drawn by the large concentration of Black Muhly, it is not uncommon to find small groups of black ladybugs hidden within the understory of the plants in the month of Senectus.


At one time Lost Lake was a valuable source of salt for the region, the mineral deposits gathered by nearby Bechtlarite storehouses that are no longer standing using evaporation pools and by gathering the built up deposits from the rocks around the shallows of the lake. Prior to the Blight this was a viable enterprise and the transport of the collected mineral were shipped all over the Empire. It was not until the Blight that the waters became tained, the temperatures dropped and the viability of sustaining a life in the region became far too dangerous and uncomfortable to merit staying. While a few stubborn pockets tried to, between the civil wars that followed and the amount of time that has passed since, no settlements remain in the proximity of the lank currently.
Alternative Name(s)
Last Stop, End of the Road
Ruling/Owning Rank

Cover image: by Midjourney


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