INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Federal officials are seeking public input on a proposal to remove the dam at Incline Lake and restore the area north of Lake Tahoe impacted by it.
The U.S. Forest Service purchased the 777-acre parcel located north of Incline Village off the Mt. Rose Highway in a much-publicized private-to-public deal from Incline Lake Corp, according to previous reports. The parcel contains Incline Lake, a meandering Third Creek with tributaries and a host of wildflowers emblazoned on the mountain slopes which creep up gradually to the Mt. Rose Wilderness area.
During the acquisition process, a site investigation and assessment determined the lake’s dam and spillway do not meet federal, state or local standards for a high-hazard dam — designated as such due to downstream development, according to a USFS press release. Incline Lake has since been drained and has not been allowed to refill.
The Forest Service is proposing to remove the major dam and spillway and stabilize the area to match adjacent contours and grades, and convert the minor dam to a low-water crossing.
The project goal would be to restore the groundwater-dependent ecosystem in 30 acres disturbed by the dam, which over 15-20 years would become a system of ponds, fens and marsh, according to USFS.
The project would be implemented in summer 2015. Funding would come from the Southern Nevada Public Land Management Act.
“Once the Forest Service reaches a decision on the future of the dam, it will begin management planning for the remainder of the parcel,” officials said.
Public comment is being accepted until July 19. To review the proposal and submit comments, visit http://www.fs.usda.gov/goto/ltbmu/InclineDam.
The Forest Service also will hold a project open house to discuss the proposal on Monday, July 8, 5-7 p.m.. at the Incline Village General Improvement District Board Room, 893 Southwood Blvd.