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Thread: Issues are similar across recreations. Fly, Ski, boat... we have similar issues.

  1. #1
    Farmboy's Avatar
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    Jan 2016
    Glens Falls, NY
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    Issues are similar across recreations. Fly, Ski, boat... we have similar issues.

    Getting back into the boating process I ran across an incident at a private waterski late out in IL. Seems a happy New Years Eve participator and his friend decided to go off-roading in his truck, found a not-quite frozen lake, and got stuck.

    Seems the rented excavator got stuck too. Wonder what the daily charge on that will add to up be?

    So, back to the story, here's what one of the owners had to say. He comes across a little harsh, but I suppose if this sort of thing keeps happening it would get old really fast. Fun info about digging the lake deeper too.

    Yes, that is my other lake, I am one of the owners. I need to get out to see if the knuckleheads got into any of the slalom course anchors or the ropes connecting them. I really like the comment "I didn't know it was a lake", pretty funny since he had to drive down the boat launch ramp to get where he was. If they did they will be on the hook for a new survey and course installation. I caught some idiots out there stuck a few years ago, about ten feet from getting into one of the ropes connecting the slalom course anchors.
    A tow truck pulled up that he had called to get him out and I told the driver that the guy who was stuck was going to jail as soon as the sheriff showed up and that he would as well if he traveled onto our property. That lake is the borrow pit from when they ran Interstate 270 across Choteau Island. If you are ever driving west on I 270 into Missouri, you can see the end of the lake on your right as you top the canal bridge. It is a really nice lake that skis well, but since there in no one living on the island we have all kinds of trashy people coming out at night leaving their disgusting stuff and also lots of problems with trespassing. They will burn anything nice you try to put out there including docks. They even burned a porta-potty one year! The idiot who is the subject of all of this attention is guilty of criminal damage to property, which I believe is a felony. Perhaps if an example is made of him, the trespassing may be reduced. The lake follows the water table, lagging by a couple of weeks. Since it is on an island with the Mississippi about a half mile to the west and the chain of rock canal about a half mile to the east, the water table is controlled by the river level. It has completely dried up about six times over the last 30 years and been in the middle of the river four times as flooding on the Mississippi blew the levee out. The only way they are getting the guy's truck and rented backhoe out is to call one of those giant wreckers if they can find one with about 4 or five hundred feet of cable and pull it out from the road. We had Alberichi construction company dig the lakes a little deeper many years ago. They said their mud cats would do the job, able to run in any mud and even water up to five feet deep. They were almost done when they buried the mud cat. Apparently the only way to get the mud cat out is another mud cat, which is REALLY expensive!

    Thanks Bowie thanked for this post

  2. #2
    JP's Avatar
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    Mar 2003
    The Big Woods of Maine
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    There's always trouble on New Year's. Reminds me of the parties at the Lake on New Years back in the Old Days of the roaring papermill town. Lots of folks would go out and bring their sleds (yes, those wonderful sleds of the 70s and 80s). Fortunately at a whopping 35-40 mph at top speed damage was generally kept to a minimum.

    Thanks to Mr. Bernoulli we always have open water in the channel separating our island from the one across from us. It's about 5 feet deep in the winter because of the lower water levels. Every once in awhile someone on a snowmobile would make an unpleasant discovery. Usually there would be darkness and beer involved. Because of the minor current the shore is mostly ice free and they can walk right out. I can remember my Dad and my Uncle helping pull sleds out with a block and tackle when they showed up the next day.

    Nowadays snowmobile weekends in the region are very popular. Lots of people "from away" partake of the sport. The modern sleds are incredibly powerful and fast. It's easy to get into trouble and easy to get hurt. I still get a chill if I hear sleds out on the Lake at night. You hit a rock near a shore or a pressure ridge and you and the sled are parting ways. Ouch. As for open water, they're lucky if they hit our channel when they get disoriented--the one on the other side of the island is the deep main channel for the West Branch of the Penobscot River going through the five lakes area. Sadly, the track record for those on that side is not as good. You get turned around at night and hit that and it's harp lessons. Too deep, a decent current and a long swim in a snowsuit. Not great odds. The wardens put up no-no signs in reflective orange on both sides nowadays which seems to be working. So far..
    JP Russell--The Cub Therapist
    1947 PA-11 Cub Special

  3. #3
    aktango58's Avatar
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    Aug 2004
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    Most of the sleds around here just need the right thumb pushed a bit with open water and you can not tell a difference- unless you have a windowed track. Also, best to have your stop button held up with a rubber o-ring so no sudden engine stops, that causes lots of good video when the engine halts and the sled digs the skis in

    I think If I were the guy with a truck stuck out in a guys ski lake, I might be showing up hat-in-hand, begging forgiveness and following his advice for truck removal.

    As our population grows and the younger generations become adults, their youth lessons, good and bad, become obvious. When our family left a camping area we made sure every last scrap of litter was picked up, including stuff left from others. We were taught to respect other's land, and politely ask permission to use others land- fenced or not.

    Not sure todays youth get that message much. One of the reasons we see so much effort to close public access.
    I don't know where you've been me lad, but I see you won first Prize!
    Likes JP liked this post

  4. #4
    Ruffair's Avatar
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    Jan 2008
    Lower Chena
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    June 2016. These two driving along the Chena river in Fairbanks.
    They stayed there quite awhile. Tracks indicated a tracked vehicle and lots of cable to extract.
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