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North Delta history: Where is Scott Lake?

Did you know Scottsdale Centre used to be a beaver pond?
The pond off 122 Street and 70 Avenue in Surrey is all that remains of Scott Lake, a large beaver pond that included the current Scottsdale Centre, the Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara and the flat land up to 122nd Street in Surrey. (Grace Kennedy photo)

If you look at a map of North Delta now, you will see Scott Road as a straight road dividing the community from Surrey. This is not the case when you look at a map from 1905. The area that now comprises the Scottsdale Centre, the Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara and the flat land up to 122nd Street in Surrey was Scott Lake.

Scott Lake was a very large beaver pond. It was large enough that early road builders went around Scott Lake, and what is now known as Nicholson Road was part of Scott Road. It rejoined the present 120th Street at what is now Wade Road.

Scott Lake was large enough that it was a recreational destination for local and New Westminster residents’ Sunday outings. Mrs Nicholson, who occupied the land on the North Delta side of Scott Lake, rented row boats and a good spot for catching a nice trout was reportedly around where the Save-On-Foods parking lot now exists.

All that remains of Scott Lake today is a small pond off of 122nd Street in Surrey, but the beavers still reside in this habitat. Where there were once two arms of Cougar Creek, there remains only one that runs in a culvert under the present Scott and Nicholson Roads before falling into Cougar Canyon on its way to the Fraser River. (The creek once fed the water systems of Burns Bog, but was diverted decades ago.)

If you want to learn more about Scott Lake, and the history of where you live in North Delta, come to the Delta Museum or check out the Delta archives.

Nancy Demwell is a board member with the Delta Museum and Archives Society.