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Need input/data for potential ballast restriction on a private access lake


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I am on a board that manages a small private access lake in northeast Ohio. We are looking for input/data on ballast restrictions on lakes. Our lake is 300 acres with an even smaller "open" area for skiing, wakeboarding, etc. We have a well maintained and frequently utilized slalom course so there is a vibrant skiing and wakeboard culture. Our current length limit is 20 ft. Anyone have any experience with ballast restrictions as well as implementation, enforcement, etc? The concern is related to erosion and stirring of the bottom leading to mobilization of phosphorus into the water column.

 

The deepest part of the lake is 16 ft.

 

thoughts? experiences?

 

 

thanks

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My thought would be a percentage of your boat weight...10% maybe? (200-300 lbs)

This would allow people to shape their wake or balance the boat, but not enhance enough to create big wake issues.

 

Enforcement? Honor system most likely.

 

Or just say none at all.

 

Good luck.

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@elr Works for a private ski lake but this is a private access non waterski only community lake with private access.

 

You mention vibrant wakeboard community as well, do you seek to prevent them from using their current ballasting?

Might be easiest to have language stating all boats must attempt to operate in a manner to minimize impact on shorelines, operators utilizing ballast, wake enhancers, or operating in such a way that the board deems damaging to water quality and shorelines will be subject to warning/suspension/revocation of water access rights. Vessels operating on lake subject to inspection prior to launch.

 

Otherwise you deal with - theyre coolers not ballast, hes my buddy greg and his 7 buddies not ballast.

 

You have a 20 foot restriction how is that currently enforced?

 

 

 

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@BraceMaker - yep need to add - Boats must operate within within USCG capacity and weight limits. From experience "boards" don't work if there is any subjectivity (one or more of the board members will want to ballast up their boat), thats why I added "record tournament" to my language. In the OPs situation when non-boating families start to have shoreline erosion and cliffing all boats will be banned, or a no wake restriction will be put in place.
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thanks for your input guys. our 20 ft limit is enforced by proof of manufacturer specs for the boat model plus title and measuring if necessary to get your lake sticker. I don't think ballast rule is truly feasible or enforceable so it probably won't happen. However, looking into it has been requested and I want to make sure, we as a board, do our due diligence. Frankly, I am seeing less and less surfers the last year or so as the 20 ft rule and shallow lake limits what surfers can do. I think they are getting board. That's why we call the Mastercraft x2 a "x-tube".

 

I'd like to get rid of tubes. They are the bigger lake hazard. But that is a whole

other thread,lol.

 

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For this instance, "staying within manufactures attached capacity tag for number of passengers and weight" would go a long way alongside a 20' restriction. Technically, this really isn't necessary as it is illegal to overload the boat over the capacity tag anyway. You may also want to put something like "weight and passengers to be arranged to make the boat run level." Or you may end up with a bunch of knuckleheads all on the same side of the boat sitting on the gunnel to make it lean (which is actually also illegal).
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Relevant topic for me right now as I'm on our Water Sports Committee on a 42 acre private lake with 18 homes, a course, and a couple of surfers. We just re-wrote our rules and they are out for review. Our max boat length is 21 foot. We went back and forth between 500 lbs and 750 lbs max ballast and ended up at 750 lbs. We also have a stipulation that you are responsible for your wakes damage, but I see determining who was responsible for damage, especially over a season or two, and enforcing that as another issue.
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You need a trip gauge on the side of the lake that would sounds an alarm if a wave hits a certain height. It would have tbe automatically adjusted for lake level. This would get to the root of the problem with immediate feed back.
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Sigh... This is a really depressing thread. Sad that we feel compelled to restrict people's enjoyment of their boats and time on the water.

 

A poorly engineered shoreline will degrade significantly from the big windstorms. The energy in 3 foot chop for a few hour storm is far more than the occasional oversize wake. But we can't regulate the wind (well, some environmentalists might try). So go after the people who aren't skiing our way.

 

But what do I know? I don't share my lake so I don't have that problem. Buy out all your big wake neighbors?

 

Eric

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@Fatroll

We are on a small private lake.

We have a very small finger that has no homes. All surfing is restricted to that area so it doesn't erode shores and swamp docks. Hopefully you can restrict where surfing takes place.

As for wake enhancers- they are not allowed but there are people that still use them because we don't have a good way to enforce it.

 

Just my opinion-If you try to ban something in particular it could backfire with people coming after things they don't like... - Slalom course.... etc.

 

Luckily our lake has a skier mindset majority.

 

This is a tough subject. - Good Luck

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@oldjeep depending where you are boating that "minimum distance" varies, here its 100 feet from docks, boaters, shore and it causes problems.

 

Mostly by that I mean people don't realize how close 100 feet really is. Our neighbor put in a swim raft a full 200 feet out from his dock, it is way deeper than it has any business being and he likes to act like that anyone boating shallower than that on the whole stretch of shoreline is violating the "swim area". He sends video of you skiing to the local DNR. But 100 feet is 100 feet - you could shoot through inside of his dock legally while skiing if you split the difference. So we just drop a skier near his raft and pull back the other way.

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There is a significant difference in wakes and damage to the shoreline between a record tournament approved tournament boat at slalom speed and something like an over ballasted x9/209 which is also AWSA approved but was not used in tournaments.

 

 

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