Eagle Lake Guardians are now donating to Pine Creek Restoration projects to help prevent an endangered or threatened species listing of our trout. You can help by going to Eagle Lake Guardians and making a donation. The faster it is funded, the faster we can get the job at hand done. There are inaccuate rumors floating around the lake that Eagle Lake Guardians support the endangered species listing. These can not be more incorrect and are from ignorant people who obviously don't read or comprehend our mission statement. We pity these ignorant people for not confirming our mission while so many others know our goal. Educate yourselves, you might just find out that you are wrong and folks will begin to confront you when spreading these rumors and inaccurate statements.
9-16-14: Lake Elevation at 5092.035 from 5092.18 on 9-5-14. I am rolling off the end of the cement now to launch my 19ft deep V outboard. There is now 1.8 ft of water at the end of the cement as per Doc Bateson, our local doctor and scientist. The transition from cement to lake bottom hasn't been too bad but it's there nonetheless & just a little "off" for loading but still doable. Just "ease" your trailer tires over the end of the cement & you should do just fine. Keep your boat on the dock side of the ramp. The far side is where it gets shallow & rocky. The water is getting shallower at the dock itself but so far there is plenty to float on. I measured around 39" at the end of the courtesy dock. The shoal was 18 to 24" on the outside of the boat tied up to the couresy dock. The shoal is trapping the gravel and silt from those power loading their boats. This won't help when it comes to deeper drafting boats come October. I need no less than 14" just to float over and that's unloaded...I also need 7-8 ft of width. Also, don't attempt cruising in towards the rock jetty, it shallows up there quite fast.
I advise I/O units to keep trimmed up and big outboards should also start being careful getting in and out. It is still deep enough at the end to have my 115 down but I am trimming up a bit just to keep on the ready and keep my water pumping clearer water. I need around 31" in total to have my motor down so I only have 8" to spare at this time with full trim. The stirred up muck is mostly course gritty sand...the stuff that grinds the impellor up. I advise hand loading & it doesn't take any longer in most cases. Power loading will keep the hole deeper but in turn will deposit the sand further towards the end of the dock and keep blowing out the end of the cement. This stuff ends up at the end of the dock & in spite of having sufficient water there now for most boats, it's getting skinnier & fall hasn't gained a foot hold yet. If you dare, drive on.
I don't have alot of room to spare with my motor at the end of the dock but I am still ok for now. Do the math. (Even at an inch a week, the math isn't looking real good for mid to late October & November, but we may still be able to launch smaller boats & larger boats will be trimming up by then.
Spalding Marina is not usable. Stones Landing is not usable. Eagles Nest is out of gravel & in soft mud now too. The low water ramp at Gallatin is about a 25 minute drive from Spalding at 45mph. Ya just have to get up and moving about 1/2 hour earlier than when you could launch here. Fuel consumption is a wash if not a saving. It used to be a 5 gallon trip from Spalding to Eagle's Nest or Shrimp Island and back in the boat whereas its about 2 1/2 gallons in my truck & about 2 gallons to get anywhere in the south basin and back after trolling. Personally, I am saving fuel by driving down south! Prices in the store and for fuel are aslo much cheaper than up north here.
I don't expect to see anything done to improve launching for fall. What we have is what we got. SEE EMAIL FROM LNF SUPERVISOR REGARDING LAUNCHING, REPAIRS, GRADE AT THE CURRENT RAMP BEING INADEQUATE & ONLY 1 TEMPORARY "RECREATION EMPLOYEE" FOR THE DISTRICT. IT ISN'T LOOKING GOOD FOR FALL LAUNCHING FOLKS & IT'S DOUBTFUL WE WILL SEE ANYTHING DONE THIS SEASON. AT LEAST I HAVE MY FLOAT TUBE AND CAN ACCESS DEEPER WATER IF I HAVE TO SOONER THAN I WANT TOO. SOMETHING TO CONSIDER FOR FALL FOLKS...if anything, small boats (10-12ft) will make it out longer.
LNF HAS BEEN LONG ON PROMISE AND SHORT ON DELIVERY. BELOW IS A RESPONSE FROM LNF RANGER DISTRICT TO ONE OF OUR VIEWERS REGARDING MAINTAINING THE CURRENT RAMP: Richard said he recieved a phone call from someone other than the supervisor who told him that there was sufficient grade at the end of the dock. This was not from a supervisor and was not in writing. AND, WAS COMPLETELY MISLEADING AND THE FACT THAT NOTHING HAS BEEN DONE TESTIFIES TO THE BS FROM THE GOV. This is one thing that LNF always does when the truth would serve them better in the eyes of the public. Instead, they always seem to contradict themselves to keep people guessing. Well, people in the real world have to plan their vacations. If they can't depend on launching safely, they will have no other choice but to change plans. If they come up and find that the ramp is in deplorable conditions when they were expecting something else generally have a bad experience & don't come back. It's about the economy, anglers are the local economy & aren't going to want to launch their $25K-$50K boats if it gets too bad & too shallow. Not everyone owns a little boat. LNF wants people to come but won't provide better conditions for the demographics they depend on.
Thank you for your e-mail. We are working with Cal Boating to evaluate and hopefully build a low water boat ramp at Eagle Lake that would be operational at extremely low water levels. We are not considering a new marina or breakwater just a boat ramp at this point in time. We cannot add on to the current ramp because the bed of the lake does not have enough slope to enable a boat to float off a trailer, it is too flat from the end of the current ramp out into the lake. It is a problem that boaters rev their engines to trailer their boats which causes a hole to be developed at the end of the ramp. We try to let folks know they need to be gentle loading their boats so that this does not occur. Everyone seems to do it not just the guides. I too would like to have a really nice functional boat launching facility at Eagle Lake, it is a special place. I know this is not a good excuse but the Lassen National Forest is very understaffed in recreation which is the resource specialty that would normally be working on this type of issue. On the District we only have a temporary employee in recreation who works in the summer. I hope that in the future we will be able to hire more employees with recreation expertise. Until then, we will work with Cal Boating on an additional ramp. They are very helpful and cooperative, in fact they paid for the ramp that you are currently using (check out the concrete sign at the top of the ramp).
Ann D. Carlson
Eagler Lake District Ranger
Lassen National Forest
477-050 Eagle Lake Road
Susanville, CA 96130
I recommend having a boat/dock hook on board. For one thing, later in fall when we are trimming our motors up higher, we won't have nearly as much control of our boats in the wind. Waves breaking in from the north will really be dangerous when it comes to launching as well as landing at the dock (west winds can be too). If you stay out too long & the wind picks up, catching the dock becomes tough. West, east and north winds are the worst for landing & I know from first hand experience that bouncing up and down on 4ft waves while trying to hit the dock & grab the cleet and make it in one piece took several attempts last year...and I had a lot more water to deal with when re positioning to take another stab at a landing. An extending hook helps tremendously but be sure you have it locked in. In heavy winds, everyone comes in at once and there can be 4 boats driving in circles, bouncing around awaiting their turn to make it to the dock. In some cases, it can take 30 minutes.
Both sides of Gallatin Road are bad in different places begining after the hard left bend in the road just beyond the entrance to Eagle Campground to the Marina. You can't see the humps and bumps in the road but last year several boats on trailers jumped off the hitch ball, a few motors (kickers mostly) were jarred off the transoms, motor cowlings popping off and even last fall a boat wasn't tied down and flew off the trailer and onto the side of the road. So, take it slower than the speed limit. I suggest no faster than 20 to 25 mph. The Lassen County Road Department has been requested to put up signage to slow down traffic in order to prevent damages but as of yet, refuse to. 530-251-8288. Be sure your boat is secured to the trailer fore and aft when heading in and out on Gallatin Road.. Boats that aren't tied down in the back will easily bounce right off the trailer & onto the road if you're moving too fast.
The reason I am detailing this out is because you can't see these bumps in the road and when you do see them, they don't look nearly as bad as they are. These have caused a lot of damage to boats/motors/trailers and even vehicles (when the trailer jumps off the ball). You are just going to have to trust me on this one, the last thing I want to see is anyone damaging their boat or gear. nce you get to the marina and going toward the ramp, the right turn towards the jetty also has some hard to see bumps so take it easy. I did see a small fishing boat fly right off the trailer when some kids were driving too fast around the turn. Those with longer trailers (IE pontoon boats at 24 ft long) have had tires off the end of the cement and the step off the end is pretty steep. If you don't hit it just right, you can lose a license plate or tail light if your trailer is low slung such as mine. Just take it slow and easy backing down for now. It isn't getting better, its getting worse.
Please note that this is the only ramp serving the lake. It is not a dock to pull up and tie up to in order to take a break, walk the dogs or eat lunch while boats are waiting to come in or get out. If you have no other choices, then at least get on the opposite side and leave the launch lane open. There is a gravel bar next to the dock that is fairly good for carefully pulling up to...be prepared to get your feet wet and raise your motor. Fiberglas boats might not want to chip their gelcoat. Aluminum boats are ok.
We will launch as long as we can and will have to make do with what we have & it's working out so far. In normal years, other lakes/reservoirs have plenty of pavement behind you and don't cause damage with the severe turbulance from props and especially jet pumps. However, at Eagle Lake, mother nature is rarely a few feet behind. Just know that when you do that, everyone is watching and know that you, in particular are not helping. It's not puttin' onto the trailer using a motor, it's gunning the engine to drive it up without cranking it. It's about being lazy, not cool and is our number one request for our visitors NOT to do. However it is not a law, but we, as anglers can help extend the launching by thinking first.