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Hayden Lake boat launch in works

by Tom Hasslinger
| December 16, 2010 8:00 PM

COEUR d'ALENE - Hayden Lake could have a re-done boat launch by next fall should funding and public approval come through.

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has proposed renovating the Sportsman Park Boat Launch located on the north end of Hayden Lake.

The improvements include replacing the 14-foot launch with a 20-foot wide one, an expanded turn-around fronting the launch with room for 24-foot boats, and replacing boarding docks and the dock approach.

The plans also include paving and striping the parking lot and tripling the amount of parking space.

"There's a need," said Bryan Helmich, IDFG regional wildlife habitat manager. "There is only one well developed boat launch on the lake, and we could use another."

Pieces still need to fall in place.

The department is applying in January for a $120,000 Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation Waterways Improvement grant. That would cover nearly half of the $260,000 project. The remaining $140,000 would be funded by the IDFG. The department has crafted an environmental plan, but permits, such as from the Idaho Department of Lands and the Army Corps of Engineers, still have to be obtained.

Also, it needs to pass the public approval test.

"I'd like to hear from folks," Helmich said. "We have to see what the public thinks about it. They may ask us for some modifications that we'll have to do."

Public meetings haven't been planned to share the plan, but Helmich said the public can contact him personally to discuss ideas and get a copy of the design. The grant, should funding come through, would be made available by July. Construction would begin in September and be done by October.

The department has recognized the need for improving the spot for the last 10 years. The only other boat launch is Honeysuckle, and it began planning Sportsman's improvements two years ago. A 2010 survey by the department showed there was 73,017 angler hours of use on Hayden Lake. Those hours are specific to fishing, and don't include other recreation and other use. In 2009, Lake Coeur d'Alene experienced 95,000 angler hours.

A second parking area will be included adjacent to the current one. Curbs and storm water control, a cement restroom and lights will also be added.

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