High lake level closes roads, boat launches

Drivers are dealing with flooded-out, closed roads. Boaters trailering to state boat launches are go

Drivers are dealing with flooded-out, closed roads. Boaters trailering to state boat launches are going home disappointed, with a dry craft.

The Great Sacandaga Lake remained at flood stage Friday, about where it has been since late Tuesday night, at an elevation 773 feet above mean sea level, and two feet over the spillway at the Conklingville Dam.

Ron and Bonnie Lawrence, daughter Ashley, 3, and Sassy the German shepherd were checking out the water level at the Broadalbin launch Friday.

Ron Lawrence is an avid boater who has lived near the lake for 11 years. He said the level, which rose over the boat tie-down and launch prep areas, is as high as he’s seen it.

“There was ice out there Tuesday, believe it or not,” he said.

Rick Robinson of Schenectady parked his rig on Lakeview Road, disappointed that he wouldn’t be taking his maiden voyage in his new Catalina 14 sailboat Friday. Robinson said he’s been sailing on the lake for 30 years and planned to call the state to see when they planned to open.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation maintains three launches on the flood-control reservoir, Northville, Broadalbin and Day.

“None of them are open,” DEC spokesman Dave Winchell confirmed Friday. “Currently, we’re waiting for the water level to recede before we can open.”

He said the launch in the town of Day may open next week. The DEC does not plow the parking lot at that site and as soon as the snow and ice are gone it will open, he said.

Much of the Northampton Beach state campground is under water. Winchell said the campground will open as scheduled May 2. As for the campsite’s beach and boat launch, which are under water, it remains to be seen when they will open.

“We’ll see what the water levels are at that time,” Winchell said.

A big stop sign greets motorists on Proper Road in Mayfield. Supervisor Herb McLain said the road floods a little every spring when the lake fills up but this year is an exception.

He said good planning helped with a bridge replacement project on Bushnell Road. Contractors drove pilings into the ground before the lake rose, McLain said, and the water’s close to the top of the pilings now but work is proceeding.

McLain said he’s frustrated because the Hudson River Black River Regulating District is inflexible and unresponsive.

Contacting the district, which operates the lake, “doesn’t do any good. They have their plan and they’re not going to deviate,” McLain said.

He said last fall supervisors from lake towns met with state officials and expressed their concerns about lake management.

“Nothing changes,” he said.

Burr Road and the road to the Mayfield Town Beach were also inundated with floodwaters Friday and the Hudson River was near flood stage in Fort Edward, as well.

Men were loading equipment on a pickup truck at Wally’s Driftwood Park Marina on Vandenburg Point Friday, where the water had overtaken the picnic grove and was lapping at the edge of Vandenburg Point Road.

“I’ve never seen it come that high around the corner,” Charlie VanAllen of Mayfield said. He said he rents a dock on Lakeside Drive but had yet to check on it. The high water level has set numerous docks free, as evidenced by the collection at Driftwood Park.

Rob Foltan, chief engineer of the regulating district, did not return a phone call for comment Friday.

Categories: Schenectady County

Leave a Reply