Last month the Lake George Association finished up a demonstration project that was the first of its kind on the shores of Lake George. The Friend’s Point Homeowners’ Association had contacted the LGA about a problem area on their property along the Lake. Due to the clay soils and southern exposure, a section of shoreline approximately 150’ long was eroding into the lake, causing turbidity in the usually clear waters. Concerned about the situation, members of the homeowner’s group reached out to the LGA for help.
“We were really excited to partner with the Friend’s Point homeowners on this project,” said Randy Rath, the LGA’s project manager. ‘They had considered other approaches such as rip-rap – but they were really interested in doing what was best for the Lake. Bio-engineering is not new. But we haven’t seen a lot of it around here just yet. So this is a very important demonstration project for our area,” said Rath.
A view of the Friends Point shoreline before the work commenced. (Click all pictures to see full-scale.)
Bioengineering uses vegetation for shoreline stabilization. Rather than traditional ‘hard’ or ‘structural’ approaches such as concrete walls, bulkheads, or rip-rap, bioengineering approaches typically have lower costs and longer-term benefits to the shoreline and water quality, making these methods a great choice for Lake George. The bank and shoreline are stabilized, and fish and wildlife habitat are also improved. However, more structural type approaches are often chosen because people are more familiar with them. While effective, they tend to be more expensive, need replacement over time, and can have detrimental environmental impacts.
The shoreline being stabilized with native vegetation.
“At the Friends Point location there was significant wave action, so we couldn’t just plant some plants on the shoreline and expect that to hold up to the forces of Mother Nature,” said Rath. “We used a stormwater product called ‘Grow Soxx’ made by the company Filtrexx. Essentially, we recreated a shoreline for the plants to grow on. But we had to be sure that our new shoreline wouldn’t be washed away like the old one. So we anchored it using a geogrid and large duckbill anchors into the ground. Then, once the new shoreline was in place came the fun part, planting it with native vegetation. The hope is that in a few years the shoreline will look natural again. You won’t even know that we were there.”
Lake George Association staff worked to create the shoreline buffer.
In addition to the shoreline work, on the same property there was also a drainage culvert in need of repair. Runoff coming out of the end of a pipe was badly eroding soil out into the lake in addition to the erosion problems right along the shoreline itself. The LGA again worked with a similar material for a solution to this problem as well. The gully being created from the stormwater runoff was graded, and then lined with the ‘Ditch Chexx’. The ‘Ditch Chexx’ were filled with a compost mix and grass seed, which will grow and stabilize the culvert. This should stop any future erosion from this location as well.
The new ‘Ditch Chexx’ culvert.
“We are really pleased with the results of this project so far,” said Rath. “We will go back to the site in the spring to check it and see how it all fared through the winter. We hope to start to do more and more projects using similar bioengineering approaches. It gives us the best bang for our buck in terms of protecting water quality and a healthy lake ecosystem overall, so we hope to get more property owners on board with this type of technique.”
Photos courtesy of the Lake George Association.
Tags: Lake George · The Environment
Tags: Casino Fun
Here are the minutes from the September 2014 Dresden Town Board meeting.
The minutes for any given month are not approved until the next month’s meeting. So these are the minutes from September which were approved in October. The October minutes will not be approved until November and so on.
Tags: The Landing
Looking out to Lake George from the Norowal Cabin Owners’ Association property in Bolton.
The Lake George Association has partnered with the Norowal Cabin Owners’ Association to install a native plant buffer along a section of the association’s shoreline along the Lake. In addition to wanting to buffer the shoreline to help protect the Lake from any potential stormwater runoff in the area, the association is also hoping that the buffer will help keep Canada geese off their property.
“We were very excited to partner with the homeowner’s association on this project. Complaints about Canada geese are nothing new around the Lake. In fact, earlier this summer we partnered with USDA/APHIS Wildlife Services to begin a Canada goose survey of the Lake as a first step in developing a management plan,” said Emily DeBolt, LGA’s Outreach Coordinator. “However, there are steps that property owners can take on their own as well,” said DeBolt.
A view in from the lake.
One such step is maintaining – or re-creating – a more natural shoreline. When geese have a direct line from the Lake to tasty, green grass, it is like an open invitation for them. “We can’t really blame the geese,” said DeBolt. “I know it isn’t what people want to hear, but we have created an ideal scenario for them and they are just obliging.”
Luckily, the homeowners at the Norowal Cabin Owners’ Association listened to what DeBolt had to say. The shoreline buffer installed at the Norowal Homeowner’s Association property will hopefully help with the goose problem come spring. By then, the native perennials installed this fall will be getting established, and will be tall enough to deter the geese, but not so tall as to impede the view of the Lake for the homeowners that use the property. “We were thrilled to work with the LGA staff to make this project happen,’ said Cheryl Lamb, Association member. “We have wanted to address our shoreline area for a while now, but we just weren’t sure where to begin. The LGA’s expertise made it possible. We can’t thank them enough for all their help.”
Native blue flag iris is planted on the left. Invasive yellow iris appears on the right.
Another important part of this project was first removing a large section of yellow iris that had taken hold along the shoreline. Yellow iris is an extremely invasive plant that is found along the shorelines of the Lake. The seeds float, so the water carries them, allowing the plant to pop up anywhere the wind takes it. “What was interesting about this yellow iris was that on the same section of shoreline there was also the native blue flag iris as well just a few feet away. You could really tell the difference between the two in terms of size when they were next to each other like that. We were sure to remove the invasive yellow iris but keep the native blue flag iris as part of the new buffer,” said DeBolt. “We will be sure to monitor the planting next year to see if any bits of yellow iris pop back up as well. We did our best to remove it all, but it is always a good idea to monitor an area for a few years just to make sure you got it all.”
“This buffer had many different components to it that will benefit the Lake. We were able to not only remove invasive species, but also then plant native species to both better stabilize the shoreline to prevent erosion and provide a buffer before stormwater runoff reaches the lake. And as if all that wasn’t enough, it will also discourage geese from using the area,” said DeBolt. “We really wish everyone would consider buffering their shoreline with native plants. It’s not only an investment in your property, but it’s also an investment in the Lake. We can’t think of a better win-win than that.”
Tags: Adirondacks · Lake George · Local Wildlife · The Environment
Among other interesting costumes during the Halloween party which closed the 2014 season in the Casino. If you weren’t there – you missed quite a good time.
Many thanks to all those who came out in their original costumes.
Looking forward to seeing everyone again in 2015.
Tags: Casino Fun
Columbus Discovers America
The Royal Standard of Spain
Oil on Panel by N.C. Wyeth (1882-1945)
U.S. Naval Academy Museum
One of a set of twelve paintings created by the noted Brandywine School artist Nowell C. Wyeth late in his career. He is the father of artist Andrew Wyeth and grandfather of Jamie Wyeth. The pictures were used to illustate a 1944 calendar with its theme being historic flags in American history.
Republican Candidate for Congress, Elise Stefanik, appeared on Fox and Friends this morning.
Tags: National News · NY State · The Landing · Washington County
This is a bit dated, having happened about 10 days ago, but it’s worth noting because the current of Lake George flows south to north.
From the Albany Times Union.
Tags: Lake George · The Environment
Tags: NY State
Please join the Lake George Association for a screening of the Mountain Lakes PBS documentary Lake Defenders at the Charles R. Wood Theatre on Tuesday October 7, 2014 at 7 pm.
Lake Defenders highlights the programs and partners working around the Lake in the battle against aquatic invasive species. LGA Executive Director Walt Lender will be present to speak about the LGA’s work in protecting Lake George from invasive species and to answer any questions. State Senator Betty Little and Mountain Lakes PBS President and CEO Alice Recore will also speak at the event.
There is a suggested donation of $5 for the event and all proceeds will go to benefit the Lake George Association.
For those who would like to watch this documentary online, it is posted below.
Tags: Lake George · Our Neighbors · The Environment · The Landing
September 30th, 2014 · No Comments
Boaters enjoy Lake George.
The Lake George Association is partnering with the Lake George Park Commission (LGPC) for a 2015 Recreation Study of the Lake. This project will be an update to the 2005 Recreation Study that was completed now a decade ago, and will provide a better understanding of the current conditions on the Lake in order to more effectively manage the lake, promote public access, and reduce congestion, overcrowding and safety hazards.
“The Commission looks forward to undertaking a comprehensive review of recreation uses on Lake George in 2015. By better understanding public use patterns, the Commission can be more fully prepared to serve the public with boating safety operations and long-term lake protection initiatives. We thank the Lake George Association for their generous financial contribution towards this important project,” said Bruce Young, Chairman of the Lake George Park Commission.
At the July meeting of the LGA’s Board of Directors, members approved a motion to fund half of the cost of the study, up to $25,000. “The Lake George Association’s Recreation Committee has met with LGPC staff and commissioners over the years to stay abreast of recreation-related issues on the Lake and feel that this is a very important study,” said Mike Dier, LGA’s Vice President of the Board of Directors and a long-standing member of the Water Recreation Committee. “We have a long history of working with partners on recreational issues on the lake. In 2008 we worked with the Lake George Power Squadron to update the navigational charts of the lake using our geographic information systems (GIS) database and we have offered numerous boater safety courses at our office over the years as well as printing an educational boater safety brochure,” said Dier.
A request for qualifications has been released by the LGPC and proposals are due at the beginning of next week by September 15. Planning work for this project is intended to be undertaken this upcoming winter with field work and data collection for this project anticipated for next summer. The final report would be complete by the end of 2015.
Just like in 2005, the updated 2015 Recreation Study will provide an overview of the type, intensity, distribution and timing of boating on Lake George based on the 2014 field season. Surveys of various user groups such as boaters, beach users, business owners, tourists, etc, will also be conducted to gather information regarding perceptions of use and enjoyment of the lake. Analysis and summary of LGPC data including Marine Patrol contacts and enforcement, dock permit trends, and marina permit trends will also be included in the report. And ideally the final report will be able to show new data trends and changes from findings in 2005 Recreation Study.
The 2005 study found 460,372 total boat use days from April-Sept with 44,177 motorboat launches and 75,835 public beach users estimated for 2005. The average horsepower on the lake was 194 while the average horsepower of performance boats was 500. During peak use, there were 261 PWCs, 303 canoes/kayaks, 317 sailboats, and 1,553 motorboats, for a grand total of 2,434 boats out on the Lake at one time at peak use. However, over the course of an entire weekend day during the summer – there were 4,700 motorboats on the Lake, and 2,500 motorboats on a weekday. It will be interesting to see how these numbers compare now ten years later.
In addition to the data collected through observation, survey data found that over ninety percent of respondents were satisfied or very satisfied with their Lake George recreational experience. High water quality contributed most to that satisfaction and water quality was very important to the majority of users. The main issues of concern identified during the surveys were invasive species, followed by noise from PWCs and unsafe operation of boats. “It will be very interesting to see how the new results compare to these findings from 2005, said Walt Lender, the LGA’s Executive Director. With the increased attention to invasive species recently, I for one am curious to see if this concern is more prominent in the updated study. It will also be very interesting to learn how lake users perceive the water quality of the lake as well. It’s one thing for those of us who think about it day in and day out, but it will be very useful to get a good idea of how a large group of lake users view the quality of the water.”
Tags: Lake George · Our Neighbors · The Landing
September 30th, 2014 · No Comments
Tonight (Tuesday) at 9 p.m., the NFL Network will be premiering the first episode in a four-part series called Finding Giants. There will be a new episode every Tuesday through October 21.
The show is a must-see for New York football fans, providing viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the front office of the Giants and the process of finding the future stars for the organization.
You can view the trailer here.
Tags: Casino Fun · NY State
September 29th, 2014 · No Comments
Margot Kapusinski has started a virtual fund drive to help hungry children in New Jersey.
My niece, Margot Kapusinski, has started a virtual food drive with the goal of $1,000 by December 31st. She is almost half way to her goal. Here is the link to her fundraising page.
In addition, she has partnered with the Community Food Bank of NJ and will be trick or treating on Halloween for nonperishable food items.
Tags: Our Neighbors · The Landing
September 28th, 2014 · No Comments
I recently received in the mail, the 2013 Annual Report for the Lake Champlain – Lake George Regional Planning Board. This organization operates a number of revolving loan fund programs provided by the US Department of Commerce and Department of Agriculture. The brochure details the companies that the Board loaned money to locally and a number of their initiatives which includes a winter road education program. (Readers of the Huletts Current will know the dangers road salt plays in the pollution of fresh water lakes.)
It’s 5 pages but an interesting read. (Click the image above to read the report.)
Tags: Adirondacks · Lake George · National News · The Landing · Washington County