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PostSubject: Ganoga Lake   Ganoga Lake EmptyWed Dec 01, 2010 2:47 am

Ganoga Lake is a natural lake in Colley Township in southeast Sullivan County in Pennsylvania, United States. Known as Robinson's Lake and Long Pond for most of the 19th century, the lake was purchased by the Ricketts family in the early 1850s and became part of R. Bruce Ricketts' extensive holdings in the area after the American Civil War. The lake is one of the highest in Pennsylvania, which led Ricketts to name it Highland Lake by 1874 and rename it Ganoga Lake in 1881; Pennsylvania senator Charles R. Buckalew suggested the name Ganoga from the Seneca language word for "water on the mountain".[3]

The Ricketts built a stone house on the lake shore by 1852 or 1855; this served as a hunting lodge and tavern. In 1873 a large wooden addition was built north of the stone house, which became a hotel known as the North Mountain House. The hotel had one of the first summer schools in the United States in 1876 and 1877. A branch railroad line to the lake served the hotel and also hauled ice cut from the lake for refrigeration. The hotel closed in 1903, though the house remained the Ricketts family summer home. After the death of R. Bruce Ricketts in 1918, his heirs sold much of his 80,000 acres (32,000 ha) to the state for Pennsylvania State Game Lands and Ricketts Glen State Park. When the lake was sold in 1957, the state tried to purchase it but was outbid by a group of investors who turned the land around it into a private housing development.

Ganoga Lake is on the Allegheny Plateau, just north of the Allegheny Front, in sedimentary rocks from the Pocono Formation. The Wisconsin Glaciation some 20,000 years ago changed the drainage patterns of the lake, this diverted its waters to Kitchen Creek and carved the 24 named waterfalls in Ricketts Glen State Park in the process. Ganoga Lake has a continental climate, with average monthly high temperatures ranging from 33 °F (1 °C) in January to 82 °F (28 °C) in July. Ganoga Lake's drainage basin is heavily forested and it is in an Important Bird Area. The lake and its surroundings have a variety of flora and fauna, although the ecosystem has been damaged by acid rain.

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