Freedom — October 10, 2008 — All predictions are for a great weekend. Weather is warm, no rain, color is great and Ossipee Lake is 1-2″ above summer level. The State Dam Authority has issued a notification that the lake level is scheduled to begin the winter draw down of 3.5′ early next week. Because of some concerns regarding the rapid drop of 9″ last week, I contacted Steve Doyon in Concord for the latest information on what to expect.
With two days of heavy rain at the end of September the lake level increased almost 14″ in 2 days. The south side gates were opened in anticipation of the rain and remained open until last Monday morning
when three were closed. Last Tuesday, gate 4 was closed. I was at the dam around 4 pm today. Gate #5 remains open and there is a wall of water going over all openings on the north side.
Per Steve, he will order the start of a slow, winter draw down next week so it is time to pull the remaining boats. (There are two anchored just up stream of the dam today).
From the standpoint of managing the water level to plan, the state and local dam authorities did a great job this year. Now if we could only get Mother Nature to follow the same plan there would be no more floods or low levels during the summer.
As for next year, the plan is to start the refill in March and reach full summer level by June 1st. Looking back over the 2008 files there was ice on the lake until mid-April and we had a spring flood starting April 2 that had the water level up to 410′ by the 13th, and all dam gates were open. THINK SPRING!