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Lake Wallenpaupack is a prime recreation destination in northeast Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains region, nestled among the counties of Hawley, Pike, and Wayne. Created in 1927 by the Pennsylvania Power and Light Company (PPL) for hydroelectric power, the lake stretches out over 5,700 acres and boasts 52 miles of shoreline. The average water depth is about 30 feet, with a maximum depth of 60 feet. Wallenapauack is a native Lenape Indian word for "the stream of swift and slow water," which is fitting as the lake was created from Wallenpaupack Creek at Wilsonville. When the dam was created, Wilsonville disappeared forever beneath the depths of the lake.
Today, the lake is a hub for water recreation during the summer months, providing opportunities for boating, water skiing, swimming and fishing. Lake fish include smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, rock bass, muskellunge, rainbow trout, walleye, pickerel, and yellow trout. For anglers who love mountain stream fishing, you can also head over to Wallenpaupack Creek or Lackawaxen River, both of which are stocked by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. If boating is your pleasure, you can launch your boat from any of the four public Recreation Areas located on Lake Wallenpaupack. There are also several marinas and resorts in the area that rent boats to vacationers. During busy summer weekends and holidays, daytime boating speed is limited to 45 mph.
The four public Recreation Areas-Caffrey, Ironwood Point, Ledgedale, and Wilsonville-offer camping from late April to mid-October. They offer electric hook-ups, restroom, shower, and laundry facilities, picnic areas, and boat launches. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission also operates a public boat launch ramp adjacent to the dam. While exploring the lake by boat, take time to visit the four islands that dot the water's surface. Epply is the largest island and offers facilities for daytime picnicking. The second largest, Kipp Island, offers a sandy beach for boat parking. The tall pine trees on Kipp Island are favorite landing sites for American Bald Eagles. Cairns Island provides a no-wake cove for paddlers. Burns Island is the smallest of the four. Dive into the blue waters to cool down or catch some rays before heading back to shore.
When you're ready to take a break from the sparkling depths, land activities abound in the beautiful Pocono Mountains. The Wallenpaupack area is home to several nature areas: Ledgedale, Shuman Point, and Beech House Creek
Wildlife Refuge. If you enjoy nature hikes, both Ledgedale and Shuman Point nature areas have marked hiking trails, many of which follow old logging roads. Nature enthusiasts will be delighted as they recognize many species of trees, including red maple, black birch, and hemlock. Animal lovers can observe the sites and sounds of the native species around them, including raccoon, red fox, gray fox, white-tailed deer, black bears, and ruffed grouse. Hunting is allowed in certain areas.
During the winter months, visitors and residents find themselves enjoying cold-weather activities such as snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing, ice skating and simply observing the beauty of a white winter wonderland. A not-to-be-missed event is the Hawley Winterfest, an annual winter festival that incorporates delicious foods, holiday crafts, and themed entertainment, sure to please the whole family.
Note: PPL merged with Riverstone Holdings in 2014 to form Talen Energy. Talen Energy took over ownership of the lake and operation of electricity generation on June 1, 2015. Subsequently, Talen Energy sold Lake Wallenpaupack Hydroelectric to Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners L.P. which took over lake operations in 2016.
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