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Monday, October 3, 2022

Around the Boathouse: Sugarloaf Lake

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Users of Sugarloaf Lake, take notice: The AGFC Fisheries Division will lower the water level of Sugarloaf Lake in Sebastian County following the Labor Day holiday (Sept. 6). The drawdown, aimed at improving the sport fish growth rate in the lake (shown above during its last drawdown, in 2017) while also allowing landowners living around the lake to improve their property, will lower the lake’s water level by 4-5 feet and should last until mid-winter.

Frank Leone, the AGFC’s supervisor for fisheries in the Russellville district office, said future drawdowns will be conducted at Sugarloaf Lake on a five-year rotation, with the next drawdown scheduled for 2027. Drawdowns are an important fishery management tool because they congregate baitfish so that sport fish may feed upon them. This increases the growth rates of sport fish such as bass and crappie. 

Drawdowns also allow landowners to complete AGFC-approved land-use projects around the lakeshore. Landowners with lots adjacent to AGFC property are reminded that they must have an approved permit application (found in the AGFC Land Use Policy) before beginning construction of any new structures on AGFC property. During the drawdown, no vehicles or heavy machinery are allowed on the lake bottom.

For more information, or to obtain a copy of the AGFC Land Use Policy, please call the Russellville Regional Office at 1-877-967-7577and ask for Frank Leone.
* A large Marine Fuel Tax project was recently completed, providing paved road improvement on Rock Springs Road and Lena Use Area Road in northern Garland County for users of Lake Ouachita and surrounding tributaries.

This was a joint project with the AGFC using Marine Fuel Tax funds (78%) matched with Garland County funds as in-kind services (22%). Nearly 2 miles of the entrance road to Lena Landing public access boat ramp were improved. The work consisted of subgrade failure repair, replacement of six deteriorated culverts and asphalt paving.

This area receives a considerable amount of use by boaters living in the Hot Springs Village and Jessieville areas. The boat ramp is located on the northeast side of Lake Ouachita, and provides access to the Big Blakely Creek and Little Blakely Creek areas of Lake Ouachita. Lena Landing access area features an asphalt parking lot for about 30 vehicle/trailer combos. This access is about 10 miles west of Blue Springs off Arkansas Highway 298 near the North Shores Resort.

The AGFC worked with the Army Corps of Engineers in 2008 to improve the Lena Landing boat ramp, which at that time was not usable for several months out of the year when the lake was low. An extended and widened boat ramp was constructed and it has proven very popular with area boaters. This area features free boat launching.

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Tammy Teague
Tammy is the heart behind the brand. Her tenacity to curate authentic journalism, supported by a genuine heart is one her many wholesome qualities.
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