The lake is going to be buzzing in 2019! Plans abound for the coming year, with projects taking off all over the place. But before we get into that, here's a heads-up about the Winter Draw Down hitting this weekend. The Draw Down is when Ameren lower lake levels for the winter in anticipation of precipitation that could raise lake levels above the safe maximum. Levels are anticipated to drop as much as 8 1/2 feet, so make sure you prepare your dock! Here are a few hints, courtesy of Lake Expo:
In order to avoid damage, dock owners are advised to follow a number of basic tips to winterize their structure:
- All docks should be tested to ensure that they can safely rise and fall with the water levels: residents should check to make sure the dock isn't pinned or hampered by any stumps or objects, and inspect all dock cables and bolts for loose parts or rust. Water lines should be drained, and boat lifts should be raised to ensure they are holding air.
- Cables should be lengthened to allow docks to drop as the Lake or river levels drop. Hinges, pins and other connections linking any remaining docks to seawalls or piers have the flexibility to follow water level fluctuations.
- Dock owners should make sure that they have a proper deicer and that the machine is working properly. For example, agitators are typically meant for deeper waters, as they are designed to bring up warmer water from the depths to prevent ice from forming. In contrast, bubblers are made for shallower waters, because they use compressed air to disturb the water, preventing ice from forming in areas that lack a warm undercurrent.
- Below the dam, dock owners should remove their docks from the Osage River before cold weather hits.
Now, on to the upcoming projects!
First thing to look at is a major sewer expansion along Highway 5 in Sunrise Beach. This expansion is funded by over $3 million in grants, and is anticipated to be a major boon for businesses and residents alike. The city is hoping to improve residential life for many, while encouraging major growth in business. The project is anticipated to go out for bid this Fall.
The final project to look at is a series of new Trail Runs that will hit the State Park this year! The first, a 25K along the Trail of Four Winds, will happen in May. Two more will follow; one on Honey Run Trail at an unspecified date, and another that has not been finalized. There are only 350 slots for the first race, so make sure you register if you're interested! You can find more details here.
Aside from these fantastic developments, there will be plenty more coming to the lake in 2019, so keep an eye out and your ears open!