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FLOOD WATCH 2017: High water puts a damper on May long weekend boating in the North Okanagan

FILE PHOTO: Boats on Okanagan Lake in September, 2016.
May 18, 2017 - 11:55 AM

NORTH OKANAGAN - Our lakes are full and that might put a bit of a wrench in May long weekend boating plans.

For starters, you may have trouble finding a place to launch your boat.

The District of Coldstream has closed all launches at the north end of Kalamalka Lake until further notice. Meanwhile, the North Okanagan Regional District has shut down the boat launch at Paddlewheel Park on Okanagan Lake citing hazardous boating conditions and high water threatening shoreline properties. 

“While we recognize that this is just one of many launches that access Okanagan Lake, and that boaters may still choose to launch from other access points, this closure demonstrates the seriousness of the hazards that exist as a result of the current high water conditions,” regional district chair Bob Fleming says in a news release. “We are strongly encouraging people to stay off of the lake this weekend, if possible, and if they must be out on the lake, to keep their speeds down in consideration of the unprotected shorelines.”

Transport Canada says anyone operating a power-driven boat in B.C. must adhere to a speed limit of 10 kilometres per hour within 30 metres of shore, states the regional district.

The City of Vernon said Thursday, May 18, that its boat launches at City owned lake accesses are open, but that could change quickly. 

“The City of Vernon is monitoring lake levels and may close boat launches prior to or during the Victoria Day long weekend,” the city says in a news release.

Boaters are reminded that there is a high level of debris in Kalamalka Lake and Okanagan Lake, and to use caution if they must go out on the water.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston or call 250-309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2017
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