Fish & Game Will Discuss Plans for Pine River Boat Ramp

Ossipee — September 12, 2011 — The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department will conduct two public meetings on Wednesday, September 21st, to detail its plans to improve the functionality of the State-owned boat ramp on Route 25, which provides no-cost access to Ossipee Lake through the Pine River. The meetings will be held from 3:00-5:00 p.m. and again from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Ossipee Town Hall in Center Ossipee.

Jeff King, Statewide Public Boat Access Program Coordinator for Fish and Game, said the agency is seeking public input on its plan, adding that it’s an opportunity to ask questions and make comments that will be considered as the plan progresses. He emphasized that the public meetings are informal and people can attend at any time during the specified hours.

The Route 25 facility was developed years ago as a commercial business offering dock space and paid access to the lake. When the business failed, the State acquired the property and assigned management responsibility to DRED, which oversaw the facility until it was transferred to Fish and Game more than a year ago. In recent months, Fish and Game removed rotted dock structures and made repairs to the aging ramp.

Ossipee Lake Alliance and Green Mountain Conservation Group implemented the lake’s first Lake Host program at the site in 2002. The Green Mountain group managed the Lake Host program at the site through last year when it turned over the responsibility to the Ossipee Conservation Commission. In addition to the program at the Pine River ramp, the Commission manages the Lake Host program at the Town of Ossipee’s Pequawket Trail ramp, which also provides free public access to boaters.

Fish and Game official King said the Department will also accept written comments and suggestions relative to the improvement project if they are postmarked by October 5th and submitted to N.H. Fish & Game Department; Facilities and Lands Division; 11 Hazen Drive; Concord, NH 03301.

12 Comments

  1. joe 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    Start charing 15 dollars a day to launch a boat. The money could go into dealing with the mifoil problem.

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  2. CC 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I think all boat ramps on the lake should charge a launch fee which should be used to maintain the ramp and, most importantly, support environmental programs on the lake.

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  3. Jim 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I absolutely agree that users of all public facilities on Ossipee Lake should be charged a fee to be able to use the lake and ramp. After all, these boats are potentially bringing milfoil to the lake are a contributing to the problems.

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  4. Amy 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I agree that a fee should be charged and I think that $15 is not enough. A higher, more onerous, fee could help to make boat owners using the public ramps realize what a serious problem milfoil is to the lake and the surrounding communities who must pay the price when there is an infestation. Also, if the ramp is not manned, maybe it needs to be so that every boat that gets launched there can be inspected. Part of a higher fee could go to pay the salary of an attendant.

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  5. Don 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I believe the lakes belong to the public, not to the people that own shoreline property on the lakes. Charging for boat ramp access is just another hidden tax, aimed at anyone that dares to intrude. I would favor a milfoil program involving a mandatory NH milfoil sticker right along side the registration sticker, one that “each and every boat owner” and operator operating on NH waters would be pay for annually. The stickers – one per registered power boat, not one per family, should be issued annually and be required of every power boat operating on NH waters regardless of the state in which the boat is registered. The stickers could be sold with the NH Boat registrations and at marina’s and at the ramps for boats needing them, and the policing could be part of the normal Marine Patrol function. I own a cottage on the lake, and I know we all pay a lot for that in taxes already, but I would not be opposed to a program that helps pay for treatment and prevention as long as “everyone” that uses the lake pays their share.

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  6. Steve 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I agree with Don. Not all users are abusers. Let us all support the maintenance of the lake.

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  7. Debbie 9 years ago September 12, 2011

    I feel that the “day trippers” visiting our lake do not treasure and care for the lake in the same way that the homeowners do. Home owners have a vested interest in our lake, and have a deep passion for the lake and take care of it. The day trippers move from lake to lake and most likely are causing the spread of the milfoil. Most lake owners put their boats in in the spring and take them out in the fall. Therefore, I agree a fee should be charged and a booth should be manned and all boats should be checked before entering and leaving the lake.
    Once in awhile my family will travel over to Wellington Beach on Newfound Lake for the day and we don’t mind paying the State Fee at all.

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  8. Ossipee Lake 9 years ago September 13, 2011

    Just to clarify: The Wellington Beach boat ramp is free. The fee charged there is for access to the beach and picnic area. The State’s policy for all Fish & Game boat ramps is free access to all boaters. Please continue to post comments here and we will forward them to Fish & Game.

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  9. don 9 years ago September 13, 2011

    I believe that there are two types of day trippers, those that are sportsmen and are here primarily to fish, and those that are here to ride, swim, and enjoy the sandy beaches. I am pretty sure that both types of day trippers treasure and care for the lake as much as those of us who are lakefront property owners. They may not have much at stake financially as the owners do but I am not convinced that we care more than they do about the lake. Their recreatioin is at stake, and I think they really care. I follow the logic about in and outers, and why one might think they were initially the importers of milfoil. The fact that many of the infected area’s not only on Ossipee but also on other lakes are right at public launch sites is undeniable. That however does not explain how other infected area’s “like at Phillips Brook” which have become infected which have no public ramps are affected. It has long been my feeling that owners, and friends of owners on Phillips Brook that launch small fishing boats over their own land have introduced the milfoil at that location. There are literally hundreds of informal launch sites on the lake, most are on private land, none are subject to state or F&G inspections and that will not stop happening. Charging a fee for public ramps solves nothing, all it does is punish day trippers and owners that use those ramps. I favor continued education – not only to prevent addition importations but to include as a boater how to avoid being responsible for the spread of the weed. Education, treatment, and management is expensive, and I still favor a milfoil boat sticker program backed up with public funds.

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  10. Tom 9 years ago September 14, 2011

    Boating fees already go to maintaining FREE boat launches. To collect fees at all boat ramps would cost more than the fees they would collect. Then what about canoes and kayaks?? The only reasonable way to get money for milfoil would be a “stamp” on top of registration fees similar to how they get “earmarked” money in the hunting program. The Archie Bunker types that generalize about all the “outsiders” need to think it through before making derogatory comments about everyone else.

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  11. Debbie 9 years ago September 14, 2011

    I am also in agreement with action being taken at these boat ramps before it is too late! A fee is the way to go and what about some sort of wash station where it would be mandatory to wash off the boats before entry. I notice there are lakes in Maine that have that. I also feel that the taxpayers that are lakefront have a lot more to loose then others but I am certainly not looking to keep others from enjoying respectively the lakes as well.I feel that there are many off lake boat owners that may not be aware of the urgency of this problem I also wish that meetings could somehow be held on weekend days as it is not possible to attend being at work during the week.

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  12. Rick 9 years ago September 21, 2011

    Don makes a lot of sense here.

    I really hate it when you have a bunch of people like Joe, CC, Jim, Amy and others, who take the “I’ve got mine” attitude, in effect claiming ownership of the lake since they own property next to it. That elitist and outdated attitude isn’t helpful and causes more harm than good.

    NOBODY owns the lake. We all use it and we should all support efforts to keep it clean and free of contaminants including Milfoil.

    If we go with the views of the “I’ve got mine” crowd then I suggest a $15 dollar usage fee every time a boat is used, and that includes the boats of lakefront owners. Every time you leave your dock you incur a $15 fee, now doesn’t that sound nice.

    Or as Don suggests there should be some fee charged at registration that goes to helping to keep the lake clean. My big problem even with that though is that I would want to see proof that the fee is actually used and used effectively for what it was intended.

    Let’s not get into the “us vs. them” mentality since history shows that going that route NEVER leads to anything good. It only leads to arguments, mistrust and conflict.

    People who have lakefront property need to understand the fact that they have no more ownership of the lake itself than anyone else who chooses to use it. Their house just sits closer to the lake and they are able to keep their boat in the water and have a dock. Hmmm… maybe we should re-visit that. Perhaps nobody should be allowed to have a dock IN the water. Maybe EVERYBODY should have to enter the water through one or two controlled entry points with state workers carefully checking every boat before entry. That would leave the lake with a beautiful look for ALL, with no ugly docks to look at, or boats sitting in the water day after day… How would that be lakefront owners?

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