Inle Lake

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On their way to market.

An Intha family make their way along one of the many canals leading to the open lake shortly after dawn.  It is chilly on the lake at this hour and the umbrella provided as a sun shade does double duty as a windbreak.

Inle Lake is almost 9.5 miles long and 3.5 miles  wide.  It's open sheet of water is approx. 23 sq. miles.  It is very shallow, only about 18' at its deepest.

 Out on the open lake an  Intha fisherman emerges from the early morning mist.  Intha  'sons of the lake', are more commonly known as leg rowers  They perch precariously on one leg on the stern wrapping the other leg and one arm around a single long oar. This leaves the other arm free for fishing.  From a standing position  they are able to see the fish and avoid the patches of water hyacinth.

 

The tall conical trap is thrust into the lake when fish are spotted.   A ring holding the net is released sending it billowing down.  If they are lucky they may catch carp, catfish, eel or snails.  This method of fishing, like the leg rowing and a large number of the fish and snails they catch are unique to Inle Lake.

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