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Boat Ramp News for Labor Day

Some of you are going to want to know the status of these boat ramps for this weekend:

Low water causes boating issues at Panhandle reservoirs

It’s been a hot, dry summer, and boaters visiting Lake Minatare and Box Butte state recreation areas may find launching and loading boats to be a challenge in coming weeks.

Because of low water levels, the docks have reached the end of their track systems, making them unusable until the water rises sometime after irrigation season.

Dan Thornton, Lake Minatare superintendent, said the dock there is expected to be completely out of the water before the coming weekend.

“There isn’t much rock at that end of the ramp, so putting boats in will be difficult at best,” he said.

Robert Hughes, Box Butte superintendent, said the dock is not in the water there, but about 50 feet of ramp remains there and the lake should remain accessible to boat trailers.

Another Panhandle reservoir, Whitney Lake, has been unconducive for launching boats for several weeks as low water has left its ramp and dock high and dry.

And here is another news release on more boat ramps:

Several boat ramps closed at Calamus, Sherman

Extremely low water levels at two central Nebraska irrigation reservoirs are challenging boaters. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is asking them to use their best judgment when launching at Calamus and Sherman reservoirs, as many ramps are closed.

At Calamus, Homestead Knolls middle lanes, Buckshot Bay west lane, and Nunda Shoal and Valley View flat boat ramps are closed to boater access. Boaters can use Homestead Knolls east and west lanes, and Buckshot Bay east lane.

At Sherman, Thunder Bay is closed to boater access, but Marina Bay is accessible.

Boaters with large boats, such as pontoons, may have difficulty loading and unloading at these reservoirs.

To see a map of public boating areas in Nebraska, visit Outdoornebraska.gov/maps.

I know someone will ask.  Here is the latest update from the Lake McConaughy FaceBook page:

Lake elevation is at 3,219.1 feet (38.4% of capacity) this week, and there is now only one ramp in service on Lake McConaughy:
*Martin Bay Low Water Ramp (near base of dam)
*Both Lake Ogallala ramps are also in service
Note: Van’s Lakeview Fishing Camp continues to provide boat launch service on the south side of Lake McConaughy.

Have a great weekend!  One way or another get on the water!

Justin Haag photo, Nebraskaland Magazine.

About daryl bauer

Daryl is a lifelong resident of Nebraska (except for a couple of years spent going to graduate school in South Dakota). He has been employed as a fisheries biologist for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission for 25 years, and his current tour of duty is as the fisheries outreach program manager. Daryl loves to share his educational knowledge and is an avid multi-species angler. He holds more than 120 Nebraska Master Angler Awards for 14 different species and holds more than 30 In-Fisherman Master Angler Awards for eight different species. He loves to talk fishing and answer questions about fishing in Nebraska, be sure to check out his blog at outdoornebraska.org.

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