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Lake Neepaulin

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Lake Neepaulin
Lake Neepaulin looking northwest from the dam
Lake Neepaulin looking northwest from the dam
LocationWantage Township, New Jersey, United States
CoordinatesCoordinates: 41°12′59″N 74°37′35″W / 41.21639°N 74.62639°W / 41.21639; -74.62639
Typefreshwater lake
Etymologyderived from the names of the residential community developer's children.
River sourcesNeepaulakating Creek
Max. length0.5 miles (0.80 km)
Surface elevation509 feet (155 m)

Lake Neepaulin is a small man-made freshwater lake located in Wantage Township in Sussex County, New Jersey in the United States.[2] Located in the watershed of Papakating Creek, a tributary of the Wallkill River, the lake was created in the 1950s by damming an unnamed mountain stream as the feature of a private residential development. The stream, now known as Neepaulakating Creek, did not receive a name until 2002.[3]


Lake Neepaulin is a man-made lake created from the damming of Neepaulakating Creek, a small mountain stream that was not named until 2002.[3] The creek's headwaters are located approximately 0.4 miles (0.64 km) northwest of the north end of Lake Neepaulin.[1][3] These headwaters are located a short distance south of County Route 650 (Libertyville Road) roughly halfway between the hamlet of Libertville in Wantage Township and Sussex Borough.[2][4] Lake Neepaulin's elevation is 509 feet (155m) above sea level.[1] The lake is the center of a private residential development. From the dam, the creek flows southeast for 1.5 miles (2.4 km) before flowing into Papakating Creek, a tributary of the Wallkill River. The creek, lake, and its watershed are located in the Kittatinny Valley which is underlain by dark shale and limestone of the Martinsburg Formation and has soils that are glacial in origin.[5][6]

According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), two developed lake communities in the Papakating Creek watershed—Lake Neepaulin and the nearby Clove Acres Lake contribute to phosphorus loading in the waters of Papakating Creek. The phosphorus loading may originate from the runoff of fertilizer applications on residential lawns, nearby agricultural operations, or from large populations of geese that inhabit the lakes.[7]


In the 1950s, a real estate developer dammed an unnamed stream located to the west and south of Sussex Borough and created Lake Neepaulin.[8] The lake was the center of a planned private lakeside residential community.[8] The lake's name is an amalgamation of the names of the original developer's children.[9] In 2014, Wantage Township acquired the lake from the former non-profit management organization and has opened designated public areas to township residents for recreation.[10][11] In acquiring the property, the municipality assumed responsibility for repayment of a $1.2 million dam restoration loan from the NJDEP.[12]


  1. ^ a b c United States Geological Survey, Geographic Names Information System, Feature Detail Report for: Lake Neepaulin. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  2. ^ a b United States Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map Archived 2012-04-05 at WebCite. Retrieved July 20, 2015. See also: United States Geological Survey, Hamburg, NJ Quadrangle USGS 1:24 Topographic Map 41074B5.
  3. ^ a b c Friends of Lake Neepaulin, Nathaniel Sajdak, Jennifer E. Runyon (USGS), United States Board of Geographic Names, Case Brief: Neepaulakating Creek (2002). Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  4. ^ Google, Inc., Google Maps location for 41°12'59"N 74°37'35"W. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  5. ^ Avery Ala Drake Jr., Richard A. Volkert, Donald H. Monteverde, Gregory C. Herman, Hugh F. Houghton, Ronald A. Parker, and Richard F. Dalton, I2540a: Bedrock geologic map of northern New Jersey, IMAP. (Washington DC: United States Geological Survey, 1997). Retrieved 22 July 2015.
  6. ^ New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Watershed Management, Amendment to the Sussex County Water Quality Management Plan: Total Maximum Daily Load to Address Phosphorus in the Clove Acres Lake and Papakating Creek Northwest Water Region Archived 2015-06-30 at the Wayback Machine (2004), 9. Retrieved June 26, 2015.
  7. ^ New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, State Development & Redevelopment Plan. Plan Endorsement Opportunities & Constraints: Analysis for Township of Frankford, Sussex County (2009), 14, 16. Retrieved July 20, 2015. Note that the NJDEP report incorrectly refers to the lake not as "Neepaulin" but as "Neepaulakating".
  8. ^ a b Eric Oberhauer, "Wantage resident suing over costs of Lake Neepaulin dam", The New Jersey Herald, April 22, 2012.
  9. ^ E-mail corresponsdence Jim Rementer (Lenape Language Project) to Jennifer E. Runyon, USGS BGN (March 24, 2004). Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  10. ^ Vera Olinski, "Wantage to take ownership of Lake Neepaulin: Public hearing on transfer scheduled for August", The Advertiser News North, July 22, 2014. Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  11. ^ Township of Wantage (New Jersey), Ordinance 2015-06: Ordinance Adopting Rules and Regulations for the Lake Neepaulin Property Known and Designated as Tax Block 69.01, Lot 40, and Block 69.02, Lot 55 Within the Township of Wantage, County of Sussex, State of New Jersey (2015). Retrieved July 20, 2015.
  12. ^ Greg Watry, "Wantage OKs rules for use of Lake Neepaulin", The New Jersey Herald, June 26, 2015. Retrieved July 20, 2015.

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