Lake Powell water level woes: Boat ramp closures hit Utah reservoirs


The water level in Lake Powell has dropped so much that many boat ramps have closed and houseboat owners have until Saturday to remove their ships from the Wahwrap main site, which is now closed for any houseboats to launch.

In Wahweep Main, motorized ships can still be launched, but officials are advising that only four-wheel drive vehicles be used because other vehicles are having difficulties on the loose gravel.

Water Entertainers Should Check Out the National Park Service Website To obtain current ramp closure information for Lake Powell.

“It’s tough,” said Kendall Nices, acting public information officer. “It’s definitely ruining a lot of people’s plans.”

He added that it could be that the Wahweep main boat launch will have to be called off sometime in August.

Bullfrog remains open for houseboats.

Elsewhere around Utah, a prolonged drought has closed boat ramps at seven Utah state parks. Both ramps are closed at Willard Bay. The Millsite Reservoir in Emery County is closed, as is Antelope Island Main Ramp, Echo’s Main Ramp, Piyute’s Main Ramp, and Painted Rocks in Yuba. Oasis’s ramp in Yuba remains open.

In Pineview, Weber County, the Anderson Cove launch site has also been closed due to low water levels.

Several other launching sites in the state park system are under an advisory, meaning that sailors must exercise extreme caution when launching.

They include: Red Fleet in Jordanelle, Rockport, Rock Cliff, Gunlock’s Main Ramp in Washington County, Great Salt Lake Marina’s Main Ramp, and Rendezvous Beach in Bear Lake.

The Utah Department of Natural Resources reported last week that 26 of Utah’s 42 largest reservoirs are at less than 55% of their capacity and that some of the state’s most popular recreational hot spots like Willard, Strawberry, Deer Creek and Pineview are at storage levels below Where they are at the end of last year’s irrigation season.

State water managers are no longer using water from this year’s runoff season, but instead dipping into emergency supplies left over from previous years.

On Tuesday, the Utah Division of Water Resources announced in a tweet that the Great Salt Lake dam hit a record low in 1963, and is expected to drop below that level in the coming days.

Devan Chavez, a spokesman for the Utah Division of Parks and Recreation, said he can’t remember a year when so many boat ramps closed and the reservoir’s condition was as low.

“Especially at the beginning of this season, the water level we are seeing now is similar to what we saw at the end of last year’s irrigation season,” he said.

Chavez said people should still get out and visit state parks, but they need to be mindful of the circumstances and check beforehand.

“Check before you go. It’s not a swimming pool. The conditions won’t be the same every time you go,” he said. “We don’t want anyone to show up at the state park and not be able to launch their boat . We don’t want anyone to be surprised.”

A boat is pulled from the water next to a boat ramp that was closed due to low water at Willard Bay North Marina in Willard, Box Alder County, on Monday, July 19, 2021.

Chavez also warned that with the ramp closed, the available boating spots are likely to be overcrowded, especially given the upcoming holiday weekend, and boaters should be prepared to make alternative choices or exercise patience. .

In addition, low reservoirs expose sailors to potential hazards that warrant taking extra precautions, Chavez stressed.

“There could be more navigation hazards you’re not used to.”

For the latest information on the Boat Ramp closure, boating candidates can visit the Circle Website And Chavez also recommends checking information on specific parks on their Facebook pages.

Utah sailors should still be able to enjoy the holiday weekend, but Chavez said it has been a rough year because of the drought.

“It’s definitely one for the books,” he said. “This is a year that I hope we don’t see again.”

A sign warns sailors of low water and a boat ramp a sharp drop-off at Lyndon Marina in the Vineyard on Monday, July 19, 2021.



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