State Plans Early Fall Drawdown of Ossipee Lake

Ossipee — July 22, 2005 — Annual drawdown in the water level of Ossipee Lake will begin on Tuesday, September 6, instead of the normal Columbus Day date, according to New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services.

The early lowering was requested by the Ossipee Lake Dam Authority and in response to numerous requests from lakeshore abutters. The total depth of the drawdown will be the same as normal, or approximately 3 to 3.5 feet from the normal summer level, Department of Environmental Services reported. Early drawdown will allow an additional five weeks of time to perform shorefront work in advance of the winter season.

It has been 11 years since a similar drawdown took place, and the dam authority supports the request as an opportunity for the property owners in each of the towns surrounding the lake to perform any needed construction, repairs or maintenance. Although an early drawdown of this nature will shorten the recreation season for many who use the lake, there is a sharp decline in lake use after Labor Day as summer residents and seasonal users head home or close up their camps, the agency reported.

“Such a schedule could benefit many more than those who have made the request, as there may be a larger population of residents and business owners who could take advantage of an early drop in lake levels,” said Steve Doyon of DES’s Dam Bureau.

“The dynamic nature of water levels, coupled with the added effects that ice and wind can have, tends to lead to deterioration and damage that makes the use and enjoyment of the natural shoreline and man-made structures difficult or impossible. Anyone planning to perform any work along the shoreline should contact the DES’s Wetlands Bureau in advance of the drawdown to insure that appropriate permits are obtained, if necessary.”

For more information, contact the Wetlands Bureau at (603) 271-2147 to determine if formal permitting will be required for any project. Questions or comments relative to the drawdown should be directed to Doyon of DES’s Dam Bureau at (603) 271-1966.

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