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DAVIDSON COUNTY VIEW OF HIGH ROCK LAKE

  • 19 Sep 2022 6:13 AM | Crawford (Administrator)

    Our 2022 Clean Sweep was held Saturday, September 17th. Lake rubbish (including tires) tossed or washed into the lake were recovered by volunteers. We had two collection points; Wildlife Lake Recreation/Access (Davidson County) and Second Dutch Creek Wildlife Recreation/Access (Rowan County) Area. 

    The Engineering firm that we requested a quote from for a Preliminary Engineering Study (PER) quotation addressing the rapidly growing problem of silt and sand accumulation in High Rock Lake requested an extension till mid/late September to submit their quotation. We expect to discuss details of this exploratory report and possible action plans at our 2022 annual HRLA membership meeting October 18th, beginning at 7 PM at Yarborough's restaurant in Lexington, NC.

    Many of us are arriving early to enjoy dinner before the meeting begins.

  • 31 Aug 2022 9:26 AM | Crawford (Administrator)

    Thank you for you interest in learning more of the actions being taken by your High Rock Lake Association in regards to the growing problem of silt/sand deposition filling in High Rock Lake at an alarming speed.
    Some residents have accomplished some level of local excavation/dredging in the past and have witnessed how the silt/sand is quickly re-deposited and continues unabated which frustrates these efforts and has very high cost. This problem is growing in scope at a much accelerated rate in recent years and will have a detrimental affect on the entire surrounding communities...it is a resource of precious water we are blessed to have in our region of North Carolina. We or our children could lose it unless action is taken now.  Our HRLA Renewable Resource Action Committee is pursuing a longtime solution to at least slow this natural process of filling in the rivers and lakes with sand/silt...it is a natural process we can slow and possibly reverse to some extent. We recognize a long-term fix will require engineering solutions such as sand/silt traps upriver to slow the deposition into High Rock Lake. There are other possible solutions, but local excavation/dredging alone will offer only temporary relief and be very expensive to home owners. Our committee action plan will update a 2001 feasibility study that cost $100,000 back in 2001/2002. Once we have current data we can then begin a public awareness program to our communities in Davidson and Rowan Counties. Our approach is to emphasize how High Rock Lake is filling in very fast and we can take steps now to slow or perhaps stop this accelerated river and Lake aging process. The negative ramifications will extend far beyond residents living around this body of water. When the lake was first created in 1928 by the Army Corps of Engineers they predicted it would have a life span of 100 years before it would fill back in...that would be 2028! The solutions will be expensive, requiring major grant funding on the state and federal levels to extend the life of this water resource.
    HRLA has identified the engineering team with two firms capable of updating the original study. These engineers plan to use the Swearingen Creek area as one primary source of data collection to update this report. This updated report will provide us the ability to present documented evidence of this process that affects more than just our lakefront residents...we will need wide community support to write and receive the grants necessary to fund solutions.
    The engineers will be reaching out to residents severely affected by this silt/sand deposition for background, history, and data collection.

    HRLA will receive a quote from the engineering team we have selected on or around September 8th. We are hopeful our organization can afford this phase one scope of study in order to begin our community awareness campaign and grant writing processes.

    I hope you will become an active member of HRLA and we invite you to join our committee focused on this issue.

  • 31 Aug 2021 9:05 AM | Crawford (Administrator)

    I had the pleasure of visiting our High Rock Lake Hydro Electric Plant at the end of this month on a tour arranged by the Yadkin River Keepers and hosted by Eagle Creek Renewable Energy that manages our lake, shoreline, and power generation plant.

    Our tour guide was Ken McRae who is the Maintenance Coordinator for this power plant operated by the US company Eagle Creek Renewable Energy (ECRE) licensed by FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission). ECRE is a subsidiary of Ontario Power Generation (OPG), an international holding company. 

    If you look closely above Ken's head in the upper left corner of this photo you will see debris hanging from power line...The public can fish along the downstream shoreline and here is a closeup of what happens to your prize fishing lures if you cast too high!

    You should also know if you choose to fish along the shoreline you will be competing against our lakes most expert feathered fishermen; White Cranes, Giant Blue Herons, Osprey and Bald Eagles.

    The white water in the lower part of this picture represents a special addition to the dam of a special turbine installed by the Eagle Creek group, a Dissolved Oxygen (DO) generator that adds oxygen into the downstream flow of water. The Oxygen levels are monitored by a permanently anchored boat to assure the water quality is measured and constantly maintained.

    The power plant has a licensed capacity to generate 32,910 kilo watts which is then purchased by Duke Energy for use by its customers. The High Rock Dam is not designed to control the lake levels, rather it maintains water pressure to drive the three gravity fed electrical generators and has gates that are raised for maintenance twice a year as needed and deal with the inflow from the Yadkin River during spring thaw. The dam is not licensed or designed for direct overflow release of water and the our High Rock Lake shoreline depth is primarily controlled and affected by heavy rain or drought conditions. In the case of severe drought conditions the power generation can be shut down.

    The High Rock Dam spans the Davidson County and Rowan County sides of the lake. There is a primitive campground on the Rowan side, one of the portage access areas to kayak enthusiasts, a 125 mile trek from the Yadkin River, across the lakes leading to the ocean via the Pee Dee River. Please note this is a primitive campsite with neither water or latrine facilities to accomodate overnight "paddling" enthusiasts. You can learn more about this kayak adventure by visiting www.yadkinriverkeeper.org

     

    The above picture is a view of the Rowan County side where the three primitive campsites are available to kayak enthusiasts (first come, first serve) via a challenging uphill portage entrance to carry your kayak around the dam.

    In addition to thanking Ken McRae for leading our tour of the power generation plant I want to thank Karen Baldwin (Eagle Creek Renewable Energy) for hosting our tour and Edgar Miller (Executive Director Yadkin River Keepers) for arranging this tour.


  • 9 Aug 2021 4:35 PM | Crawford (Administrator)


High Rock Lake Association is a 501(c) 4 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 159, Southmont, NC 27351

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