Winter drawdowns underway

Dams on Great Pond, Long Pond and Salmon Lake were opened Monday, Oct. 10, to lower water levels 18 inches to fall/winter water storage levels. The drawdown must be completed by Nov. 1.


The primary objective of the Belgrade Area Dams Committee’s fall and winter water management is to lower the lakes to accommodate increased rainfall and runoff that occurs in the fall and again in late winter and early spring. Fall drawdown activities will depend on the amount of rainfall received in this area.


Optimum drawdown levels are 1 foot to 1.5 feet below spillway for Salmon Lake, and 1.5 feet to 2.0 feet below spillway for Great Pond and Long Pond. At no time will the lakes be drawn lower than 1.5 feet below the spillway on Salmon Lake and 2.5 feet below the spillway on Great Pond and Long Pond.


On North Pond, the top beam of the dam was raised Saturday, Oct. 8, and the bottom beam will be raised Saturday, Oct. 15.


The East Pond Association raised the top beam of its two beams on Thursday, Oct. 13. The bottom beam will be raised in the coming days.


Drawdowns of Great Pond, Long Pond and Salmon Lake must end by Oct. 31 to avoid adversely affecting fish and wildlife. Whatever level is achieved by Oct. 31 will be the lowest level at which the lake may be kept throughout the winter, unless an unusual amount of rainfall in September and October force emergency provision for additional drawdown.


Anyone with a boat still on a lift or in the lakes is advised to remove it before lake levels are too low to do so. The Belgrade Dams Committee suggests removing the canopy cover while it can still be accessed from your boat.

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