2012 — MCHENRY — The Department of Natural Resources is planning next week to begin Phase II of a Deep Creek Lake sediment study, according to the Property Owners’ Association of Deep Creek Lake.
Phase I was completed for selected coves during 2010-2011.
Phase II will target the entire lake to evaluate sediment distribution, character and chemistry of the sediment, and to determine alternatives to control and cope with sedimentation, Scott Johnson, association board member, said.
The cost estimate for Phase II is $180,000, with $65,000 to be funded by the DNR, according to Johnson. Working with the Garrett County commissioners, the association has agreed to help make up the $115,000 difference.
At a special meeting of the board of directors, called by president Troy Ellington, members voted unanimously to contribute $20,000.
The county has committed to about $95,000, according to planning director John Nelson. The funding will allow sampling to begin prior to subaquatic vegetation starting to grow as the lake water temperature begins to rise.
The study will provide a database to examine trends of sediment deposits and how to deal with their management. Members of the association and county staff have been providing input to the DNR to incorporate into the scope of the work.
Sedimentation is a natural process whereby soil is deposited through erosion into a body of water. The existing bathymetry map — the water depth of the lake — is inadequate for this study.
Phase II will include mapping the accumulated sediment in the lake, determining the physical and chemical properties of the sediment, addressing the removal and/or relocation of the sediment and identifying the sources of the sediment and strategies to minimize additional accumulations.
Results of the study will be released as they become available, with a final report is due in approximately one year.
The association has conducted two workshops over the past two years. Brainstorming sessions along with panel discussions have brought awareness to concerns about the long-term health of the lake.
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