With Labor Day weekend kicking off in just two days, Shuswap Lake in British Columbia, Canada is facing the busiest time for houseboating. But CBC News reports that this year the water level is very low, which makes for difficult access to some marinas. Some docks are even left high and dry. This is unfortunately paying a difficult toll on all the businesses that serve houseboats in the area, from restaurants to summer rental properties with boat-only access.
Neil Millar, president of the Sicamous Chamber of Commerce and a houseboat business owner himself says, "Where this really has an impact is on the tourism businesses that are reliant on traffic from the lake.”
Shuswap Lake is one of those bodies of water that experiences low water levels almost like clockwork every year, but 2015 has been plagued by record-breaking heat and drought conditions that hit the water level hard.
According to Miller, this houseboating community’s solution is to dredge specific spots on the lake, such as Sicamous Channel.
"It's a huge tourism facility. It brings, of course, a lot of money into the community and into the region,” Miller explains. "It definitely needs to be done, and it seems that it's a very, very difficult thing to get done."
While the dredging work for privately-owned property is on the owner, the chamber of commerce president is hoping that local communities will work with senior government to fund dredging work at those specific spots that most need it. Miller explained that conflict between various governments and agencies have thrown a hitch in what used to be a regular process of dredging, and that these annual problems with low water level will only grow worse until they regain their feet and dredge regularly once more.
To view the full article by CBC News, click here.
Photo submitted to CBC News by Neil Millar