What’s the Largest Man-Made Lake in New Jersey

Discover the wonder of Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey’s majestic man-made lake. Spanning an impressive 2,600 acres across Morris and Sussex counties, this impressive expanse has a maximum depth of 52 feet. Created in the late 19th century by the Morris Canal and Banking Company to supply their canal system, its waters offer stunning recreational opportunities.

From boating and fishing to swimming and picnicking – make memories at Lake Hopatcong! Blessed with multiple parks and beaches on its shores, it promises joy for all ages. And best of all – the lake remains untouched by overdevelopment thanks to New Jersey’s commitment to protecting its natural heritage.

Come explore this breathtaking body of water today! Experience nature in its most pristine form as you discover Lake Hopatcong’s beauty and serenity – something only found in New Jersey.

Quick Navigation

Overview of Man-Made Lakes in New Jersey

Dotted across New Jersey are man-made lakes crafted by humans to provide much-needed recreation, supply water, or help protect against flooding. These tranquil oases welcome tourists seeking outdoor adventure and contemplation. Here’s an overview of some of the state’s largest such havens.

1. Lake Hopatcong:

Embark on a journey to explore the enchanting Lake Hopatcong. Spanning an immense 2,600 acres, this picturesque oasis boasts a depth of up to 52 feet and stands as one of New Jersey’s largest man-made lakes. Formed in the late 19th century through the damming of the Musconetcong River, it offers plenty of recreational activities, from boating to fishing and swimming. Experience a tranquil day out with nature in this truly captivating setting.

2. Greenwood Lake:

A hub of aquatic beauty, Greenwood Lake offers a picturesque getaway. Located at the New Jersey-New York border, its expansive 1,920 acres and 50-foot depth make it an ideal destination for fishing and watersports. Created by damming the Wanaque River in the early 19th century, this precious oasis provides breathtaking views and memorable experiences. Whether you need some rest or recreation – this lake has it all!

3. Swartswood Lake:

Swartswood Lake, in Sussex County, captivates visitors with its 520-acre beauty. Created from damming the Paulins Kill River, this popular destination offers exciting pastimes like fishing, boating, and swimming. Nature lovers also appreciate its still waters dotted with lily pads and mossy rocks. Rustic trails skirt the lake’s circumference while tall trees stand guard above its shimmering surface.

4. Lake Musconetcong:

Straddling Morris and Sussex counties, the 329-acre Lake Musconetcong was fashioned in the early 19th century when the Musconetcong River was dammed. Attracting fishermen, boaters, and kayakers alike, its picturesque scenery creates an enviable lakeside experience.

5. Lake Assunpink:

Discover the beauty of Lake Assunpink, situated in Mercer County. Spanning 225 acres and reaching a maximum depth of 18 feet, it was created by damming Assunpink Creek in the early 20th century. A popular spot for fishing, boating, and birdwatching, its splendor is sure to captivate any outdoorsman. Come to experience its awe-inspiring power and marvel at its pristine waters!

Criteria for Determining the Largest Man-Made Lake

To determine the largest man-made lake in New Jersey, several factors must be assessed. Size, depth, volume, and distance from other water sources are just a few aspects that need to be evaluated to identify the most sizable one. Furthermore, water quality should also be considered—as well as recreational activities that can take place on and around the lake—to make sure everyone’s safety is ensured.

These criteria include:

  • Surface Area: The surface area of the lake is one of the most important criteria when determining its size. This is the total area of the lake that is covered by water.
  • Volume: The volume of the lake is also an important factor. This is the total amount of water that the lake can hold.
  • Depth: The depth of the lake is another important factor. A deeper lake will generally have a larger volume and surface area than a shallower lake.
  • Length and Width: The length and width of the lake can also be used to determine its size. A longer and wider lake will generally have a larger surface area and volume than a shorter and narrower lake.

When measuring size, New Jersey’s man-made lakes have more to consider than depth and volume. Purpose, location, and history all provide vital perspectives for the fullest understanding of the lake.

These details need to be taken into account when determining which is the largest. Doing so will ensure an appreciation of the full story behind the lake, from its inception to its influence on its surrounding landscape.

Beyond simple measurements, reflecting on a lake’s story gives us a glimpse into its purpose and impact, deepening our connection with natural spaces and inspiring further care for our environment.

The Largest Man-Made Lake in New Jersey

History and Creation

In the 1960s, New Jersey initiated a project to address the ever-increasing water demand of the state. The result: Round Valley Reservoir – an immense lake formed by damming Cushetunk Mountain Stream and inundating the valley with its waters. A feat of engineering unmatched in scale and impact for New Jersey.

Size and Depth

Deep and far-reaching, the Round Valley Reservoir can boast an unparalleled 2,350 acres. Its capacity of 55.6 billion gallons? That’s simply immense – used for drinking water, irrigation, and recreation alike. At 180 feet deep, it is recognized as one of the deepest lakes in New Jersey. A prime reservoir indeed!

Activities and Attractions

Escape to Round Valley Reservoir, an idyllic destination for nature lovers. Enjoy fishing for trout, bass, and catfish; boat rentals are available. With something for all skill levels, explore the hiking trails offering jaw-dropping views of the mountains and valleys. And don’t forget to camp beneath the starry skies amongst beautiful woods.

Create memories at this one-of-a-kind New Jersey location. Delight in fishing with friends or boating across the tranquil waters. Hike through diverse terrain, immersing yourself in nature’s wonders. Spend a night beneath the stars and wake up to experience its beauty again.

Revel in an outdoor paradise like nowhere else – all within reach at The Round Valley Reservoir. Challenge yourself in varied activities or simply take it all in from atop marveling views. Make some unforgettable memories fit for even the most adventurous travelers!

History and Description of Lake Hopatcong

Nestled in northern New Jersey, Lake Hopatcong has been a destination of delight since the Wisconsin glaciation 12,000 years ago. Its name, derived from the Lenape language ‘hapakonoesson’ meaning ‘stone water,’ is fitting for the sparkling lake that extends across 4 square miles.

Positioned among Morris and Sussex counties, Lake Hopatcong was originally used by Native Americans as a source of food, transport, and recreation. In the 1700s, with European settlers came summer homes and resorts at the pool – heralding in a century of tourism and leisure.

Fast-forward to the present day; this freshwater expanse remains an attractive place to relax. Marinas, beach parks, and plenty of watersports offer locals and travelers ample opportunity to enjoy its shoreline beauty. Respite doesn’t just stop at sightseeing, though; bass fishing and other species, such as walleye, can fill days too!

Maybe vacate on Raccoon Island or camp out on Halsey Island or Ellis Island? All three are available for hire. Mahlon Dickerson Reservation to Lee’s County Park Marina adds further public options when it comes to temporary stay spots around Lake Hopatcong. With all these attractions combined – why wouldn’t you take your vacation here?

Tourism at Lake Hopatcong

Experience Lake Hopatcong – the mecca of sights and activities. With boating, fishing, parks, beaches, and a wealth of history, there’s something here for everyone.

Take to the lake with rented boats or your own, uncovering its coves and bays for hours of exploration. Or cast a line and try to hook into one of the many bass and catfish that inhabit the waters.

On-land adventure beckons, too, with state park beaches offering swimming under the watchful eye of lifeguards in summer. Plus, hikes, picnics, and more to get stuck into.

Delve into centuries past with a visit to the Historical Museum. Explore Native American life as well as colonial times and first-century resort destination development – all part of this New Jersey gem’s fascinating tale.

Lake Hopatcong: endless revelations await every single visitor! Come seek what you don’t find elsewhere – fun-filled outdoor recreation amidst a unique historical backdrop.

Ecology of Lake Hopatcong

A celebrated recreational destination, Lake Hopatcong harbors a vibrant and complex ecosystem. Hence, the Lake Hopatcong Commission was established in 2001 for the conservation and protection of the lake.

Concealed beneath its serene waters lies home to an array of species, like largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and channel catfish – as well as turtles like an eastern painted turtle and snapping turtle. Above the surface, take flight several bird types, such as loon (in the threatened category in NJ), osprey, bald eagle, and great blue heron.

Water quality is vigilantly monitored by the Commission to reduce pollutants entering it, also regulating the growth of potentially detrimental algae blooms. The lake’s shoreline is vital to its ecosystem, functioning as a habitat for various fauna-flora and serving to filter pollutants entering lake water. The Lake Hopatcong Foundation seeks to preserve the delicate balance by investing in projects like shoreline stabilization plus native vegetation planting.

So come explore this precious environment; unearth ancestral wildlife secrets with us!

Other Notable Man-Made Lakes in New Jersey

New Jersey has more than one remarkable man-made lake. Aside from Lake Hopatcong – the state’s largest -, others worth noting are the ones to be enjoyed. Each is formed by an expansive body of water, carefully crafted for recreational use and awe-inspiring scenery.

Whether situated in the mountains or lowlands, all have something special to offer visitors and locals alike.

Greenwood Lake

Greenwood Lake’s man-made beauty beckons adventurers. Straddling the NJ/NY border, this idyllic oasis was created at the dawn of the 1900s by damming two majestic rivers: Wanaque and Ramapo. Its nine-mile length offers plenty of outdoor delights with a maximum depth of 51 feet – perfect for boating, fishing, and swimming. Take in an unforgettable day on Greenwood Lake.

Swartswood Lake

Spanning over 519 acres, Swartswood Lake is a must-visit spot in Sussex County, New Jersey. Created by damming the Paulins Kill River early in the 1900s, the lake boasts an impressive 24 feet maximum depth, ideal for fishing and kayaking adventures or leisurely hikes. A perfect backdrop for unforgettable moments and newfound exploration.

Lake Mohawk

Lake Mohawk is a private 800-acre reservoir located in the stunning Sussex County of New Jersey. Created by damming the Wallkill River at the start of the 20th century, this majestic body of water boasts a maximum depth of 100 feet and offers boating, fishing, and swimming activities for visitors to enjoy. Maintained by the Lake Mohawk Country Club, this beloved lake has been drawing people from across America for generations.

Lake Mercer

Enjoy nature’s ultimate playground! Mercer Lake, located in Mercer County, New Jersey, is an ideal destination for fishing, kayaking, and rowing. Brought to life by damming the Crosswicks Creek in the 1970s, it’s 365 acres of scenic beauty complemented by a 27-foot maximum depth. Swim, paddle, or row – invite your friends to this stunning lake for memories that will last a lifetime!


Lake Hopatcong: biggest in NJ. At 2,600 acres with a maximum depth of 58 feet, it’s no wonder Lake Hopatcong is the go-to spot for recreation in New Jersey. Boating, fishing, and public beaches are just some of the amenities visitors can enjoy.

Formed by damming the Musconetcong River, this massive man-made lake caused controversy at its inception due to displacement and environmental impact. Today, however, it has become an important part of the state’s culture as people flock to experience all its grandeur each year.

Compared to other lakes, such as Greenwood Lake and Lake Mohawk, Hosptacong stands head and shoulders above their size and depth-wise. Its magnificence is undisputed. Visitors should prepare for an unforgettable adventure on its vast expanses of water like no other in New Jersey.