From the President -Spring 2020

There are two important topics I want to share with you in this newsletter.
First, the DNR completed their bi-annual stocking of extended growth (6-8 inch) walleye last fall. In October, 2019, the Spooner Fish Hatchery team stocked 27,159 walleye in Nelson Lake. That brought the total number of extended growth walleye stocked in Nelson Lake to 183,070 since the stocking efforts began in 2003. In past years the stocking occurred in one or two locations, but in 2019 five locations were used for the stocking effort. The locations used were Gerlach Landing, Tag Alder Access, Four Seasons Resort, Reiskes Resort, and Nelson Lake Lodge. The reason five locations were used was due to the results of the fall Electro-Fishing Survey which showed a plentiful distribution of forage fish throughout the lake. A broader distribution of stocked fish may increase the survival rate of stocked walleye, which has only been about 10% in recent years.

Second (and probably the most important topic) is our progress on the plans to draw down the lake level during the winter of 2020-21. You may recall from the articles in the spring newsletter that the drawdown is a strategy to restore the gravel spawning beds by exposing the weed growth that covers them to a winter freeze which should reduce the weed growth. The lake level will be lowered 4 feet from the normal gauge water level, starting September 15th, 2020, and dropping about 14 inches per week until the desired level is achieved. While the water is low, the Township will repair the boat ramps and the County will inspect the Dam and Stop Logs. The County Land, Water, and Forest Resources Committee approved the plan at their meeting on February 12th, 2020, and it was published in the Sawyer County Record the following week.

For property owners on Nelson Lake it will be very important to plan boat removals early next fall. Boats should be removed from boat lifts by September 15th because the water level will go down very quickly, making it very difficult to get boats off their lifts. Also, if you hire a pontoon with fork lift to remove your lift or dock, that work will have to be completed by September 15th. Don’t be tempted to leave your dock in over winter. Refill will begin in March, 2021, while there will still be significant ice on the water. The ice could damage docks as it moves around in the spring winds. Be safe. Take your docks and lifts out of the lake as you normally would.

There will be significant communication this summer in an attempt to ensure everyone is well aware. Posters will be created and posted at the landings and at resorts. Handout cards will be made and distributed at the boat landings by the boat inspectors. Alerts will be sent to all members of the association as key dates approach. And we encourage everyone
to pass the word to property owners and neighbors who may not be association members. Your help in communicating this information will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for your support.
Rick Lindner