Archive for Thursday, July 12, 2007

Littering leads Corps to block access

Reopening date undetermined

Levi Lyons, Lawrence, who'll be a junior at Kansas University this fall, fishes Thursday in the Clinton Lake dam outlet.  The outlet is being closed today because some fishermen were leaving too much trash that could wash downriver and were using illegal fishing techniques.

Levi Lyons, Lawrence, who'll be a junior at Kansas University this fall, fishes Thursday in the Clinton Lake dam outlet. The outlet is being closed today because some fishermen were leaving too much trash that could wash downriver and were using illegal fishing techniques.

July 12, 2007

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Clinton Lake Dam

Three area anglers explain what they think of the temporary closure of the outlet below the Clinton Lake Dam. Enlarge video

Clinton Lake Dam outlet temporarily shut down

A few recurring problems prompt the US Army Corps of Engineers to shut down the outlet below Clinton Lake Dam, and as 6News reporter Laura McHugh explains, officials aren't sure how long with temporary ban will last. Enlarge video

Fishing at the Clinton Lake Dam Outlet

After problems caused by fishermen looking for good catches at the east outlet from the Clinton Lake dam, the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers has closed the outlet for the first time since 1993. Enlarge video

Too much of a good thing is causing problems at the Clinton Lake dam outlet.

Rapid release of lake water means more fish in the outlet on the dam's east side. And more fish attract more fishermen who leave more trash, said Jon Carlisle, ranger and natural resources specialist for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

"If all the trash isn't picked up, then the rains come and it gets washed down the river," Carlisle said.

More fish also lure more fishermen who use hooks to try to snag the sides of fish, which is illegal, Carlisle said.

Because of those problems, Corps officials temporarily closed the outlet - effective today - for the first time since 1993. Carlisle said he wasn't sure how long it would last.

The corps is releasing 1,000 cubic feet of lake water per second, Carlisle said. A normal release is 21 cubic feet, he said. The release into the outlet and then the Wakarusa River, the fourth this year, is necessary because of heavy rains, he said.

"Before we did our last release, the amount of trash there was just more than we could tolerate," Carlisle said, listing fishing lines, food, beverages and aluminum cans.

Thursday morning, about a dozen people fished at the outlet. Paper and fast-food wrappers littered the banks. A beer bottle was left on top of a post in the parking lot.

Fisherman Tom King, Topeka, said the amount of trash was high, but he'd seen it a lot worse.

"There were some people who came out and sat and ate their McDonald's and then just left their stuff," King said, pointing to trash.

Ottawa fisherman Blaine Scott said he'd been at the outlet during other releases when the crowd was nearly out of control.

"Some people were drunk, and there'd be fights," he said.

Comments

KS 7 years, 9 months ago

Classic example of most things in life. If you don't police yourselves, someone else will.

ramsrevenge 7 years, 9 months ago

I've found trash cans from the spillway half a mile away washed up on the banks. Usually not filled with trash either. Nice job WTer's!

Lars Larson 7 years, 9 months ago

I was always taught to leave it cleaner than you found it as well.

larrykaki 7 years, 9 months ago

I went there fishing almost every weekend, I picked up a full bag of trash when I left, it is really sad that some people don't appreciate our good environment and people who really like fishing get punished.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 7 years, 9 months ago

I wonder if a simple sign might help ("I pity the fool who don't pick up his trash!"). Also, are there trash cans nearby?

nut_case 7 years, 9 months ago

Amen, KS! Too bad people are such pigs. So now the government gets to remind us that, like most everything, access to this fishing hole is a privilege, not a right.

And I'll say thanks to larrykaki for doing more than his part and trying to help.

hornhunter 7 years, 9 months ago

Does this mean Wal-Mart could be shut down for shoppers too? Look at their trash problems, its not just the spill way

jrherrick 7 years, 9 months ago

Niles....How do you know the people who littered were white? Nice racist comment there!

staff04 7 years, 9 months ago

"Also, are there trash cans nearby?"

Does it matter?

stuckinthemiddle 7 years, 9 months ago

It's mind boggling how ignorant and or selfish and or lazy people can be.

farns73 7 years, 9 months ago

Thanks to all the snaggers and litterbugs that have made a good thing bad. I went out there a week or so ago and even my nine year old son was mad because so many people trashed the place. He collected a whole 5 gallon bucket full of trash before we left and thew it away. As a kid we were always taught to leave the places we fish better than we found them if we could. At least make it more like we would like to find it!! So again thanks to all the AHoles that cost us decent guys a good fishing hole.

Chris Golledge 7 years, 9 months ago

Come on, let's hear someone get mad at the corp for calling it quits on the littering _holes.

If I had my way, there'd be cameras taking pictures and the jerks would get $250 fines a pop. I know, not really practical, but it sure would be satisfying.

Too bad the jerks had to ruin it for everyone.

Eric Neuteboom 7 years, 9 months ago

"Take only snapshots, leave only footprints."

Wish more people adhered to that. Never been much of a fisherman, but this is a poor reflection of the people who fish there. Sad that it's probably only 10% of the people who go there who leave trash and ruin it for everyone else. Bums. Pick up after yourself!

arlo 7 years, 9 months ago

I personally think they should just sit back on the dam with binos and ticket everyone littering and fishing illegally. People that do things like this and do not follow the regs need to be fined to discourage them from doing it again, instead of punishing those who do clean up after themselves and know and follow the laws. Leave the real sportsmen and women alone and make a few extra bucks in fines, it's a win win.

Joe Hyde 7 years, 9 months ago

I love to hunt and fish, and it embarrasses me that fishermen and duck hunters tend to be the worst litterbugs on the planet.

If only Wildlife & Parks could force prospective license buyers to take (and pass) a standard IQ test combined with a Minnesota Multi-phasic Personality Inventory. People could not acquire a hunting for fishing license unless their IQ score was at least two points higher than a rock...and...their MMPI indicates that they do not have the personality traits of a sociopath.

I like cg22165's idea -- installing surveillance cameras at the outlet to enable "remote enforcement"? Such cameras should be installed on the drawdown tower as well, so that officers can handcuff the same creeps who litter the face of the dam on the lake side of Clinton outlet.

The Corps did right by closing the outlet. As a fisherman I hate to see it done, but what I hate worse is seeing a fishing spot getting abused and disrespected.

Laura Watkins 7 years, 9 months ago

staff04 (Anonymous) says:

"Also, are there trash cans nearby?"

Does it matter?"

I agree. If there aren't trash cans nearby, these people should put their trash in a sack and then dump it in the next trash can they find. It's still your responsibility to throw out your crap even if it's an inconvenience to you.

daddax98 7 years, 9 months ago

staff04 (Anonymous) says:

"Also, are there trash cans nearby?"

Does it matter?"

"I agree. If there aren't trash cans nearby, these people should put their trash in a sack and then dump it in the next trash can they find. It's still your responsibility to throw out your crap even if it's an inconvenience to you."

I think i does matter; we all know people are lazy and if trash cans are more accessible the chances are that they would use them more. What they SHOULD do is of no consequence what they WILL is and now everyone is punished because of a few lazy bums

Kat Christian 7 years, 9 months ago

Takes a just a few to ruin it for others. This is a prime example of people being lazy and disrepectful which equals ignorance. Obvisously their mothers never taught them any better and if she did they were too hard-headed to take her advice.

kneejerkreaction 7 years, 9 months ago

Fishing is an outdoor activity and anyone participating should have respect for the outdoors. FInes of $500 would be appropriate for anyone leaving an empty bag of McDonalds food behind. Then 6 months of community service picking up other peoples' trash at the lake. Then public castration you freaking trashy morons......

hipper_than_hip 7 years, 9 months ago

KDWP has done away with dumpsters in several places around the lake, as they were being used by people dumping trash (asphalt shingles, mattresses, etc) rather than litter. The idea is that if no trash can or dumpster is available, then people will pack their stuff out.

blessed3x 7 years, 9 months ago

As an avid fisherman, I too am disgusted by fishermen that litter. Instead of a fine, however, I would like to see fishermen and hunters caught littering denied future fishing and hunting licenses and their current license revoked. Maybe the first offense could be loss of license AND a small fine, second offense no license for 5 years, third offense lifetime ban from obtaining a license. Then if they fish again, the current laws regarding fishing without a license would come into play.

Just a thought.

As a scout leader, my boys know "Pack it in, pack it out" by heart and the scout that litters on my campout/fishing day/etc... is playing with fire.

ranger73 7 years, 9 months ago

How many of those people that left all the trash there even have fishing licenses? I would guess less than half. Too bad the Corp had to resort to this... Suprising that there hasn't been any PETA nutters applauding this since they want to ban fishing anyway. Hurts the poor fisheys.

Confrontation 7 years, 9 months ago

"People could not acquire a hunting for fishing license unless their IQ score was at least two points higher than a rock"

I love how people assume that only those with low IQ's are trashing the place. Does it take high levels of education to have a respect for nature? No. The people who trash this area are jerks, but that has nothing to do with their intelligence.

lawrencechick 7 years, 9 months ago

While they are at, it they should close the POOL too. The last two times I've been there, there is trash laying all over the place. The eating area had at least 5 empty nacho containers laying on the cement , spilling cheese all over. There was trash all around the pool area as well. I was there for 3 hours and not one employee picked anything up. If they see a kid (or adult) not pick up after themselves, kick their lazy butts out. You want me to pay $4 for this???

shuddleston 7 years, 9 months ago

I have one word that sums up the loosely used word Fishermen that left their empty cans of Hamm's polluting the outlet - WANKS!

ps. PETA = People eating tasty animals.

KS 7 years, 9 months ago

We are all assuming the guilty parties are fishermen. Maybe not!

countryman1 7 years, 9 months ago

As a frequent fisherman at the Clinton outlet, I am saddened that this closing had to take place. I go fishing to relax. It doesn't matter whether I catch anything or not. The last several times I have been there, I have noticed more and more trash accumulate. I see those who bring out bags of junk food and then throw their empty containers on the ground. These people are young and old, and male and female. Also, those who choose to drink while at the lake, but can't control themselves, "GET A LIFE!" About 2 weeks ago there were about 6-8 young men at the spillway, drinking, yelling, cursing etc. There was a family there with 2 very young girls. These drunks were grabbing their crotch and yelling obscenities at these young kids. I am sure the dad realized these scum were not worth fighting so he loaded his family up in their van and left. Sad when family can't enjoy themselves. I think the COE made a tough decision, but something had to be done. I don't think this small percentage of trashers will take the hint. It is probably good for me because I can just stay at home and stress instead of stressing at Clinton Lake.

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