History of Canada Lake

Canada Lake, NY

Early settlers began to arrive in what is now the Town of Caroga in the mid 1700ís. Most of the rough topography did not support farming. Instead, logging and tanning industries flourished during the late 1700ís through the late 1800ís. Early roads were built to connect the mills with population centers such as Johnstown and Fultonville on the Erie Canal, thus enabling sportsmen and others who appreciated nature to enjoy the beauty of Canada Lake and other lakes in the town.

The lakeís north shore road was built in the 1840ís providing easier access to the lake itself. Homes and hotels sprung up, wood burning steamers carried tourists on the lake, and Canada Lake became a popular resort destination. Most of the nearly 300 cottages that now dot the shores of Canada, and connecting Green, and West Lakes were built in the late 1800ís and early 1900ís. State lands make up the remainder of the lakeís shoreline.

Canada Lake and itís environs, which include East Caroga and West Caroga Lakes and Pine Lake, continue to have a rural flavor. The Town of Caroga has a year-round population of approximately 1,100 people. During the summer when the lakeside cottages brim with activity, the population rises by an additional 6,000, but since summer residents are not all present at the same time and recreational activities on the lakes, rivers, mountains and trails are plentiful, the area maintains itís rural character all year long.