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Lake Orono looks different these days! Since September, the lake was closely monitored as the water levels were drawn down in preparation for dredging over the winter months. Now that the weather is colder, the city’s contractor, New Look Contracting, Inc., is preparing for the dredging.
Residents may notice movement on the lake as they begin to create haul routes, construct temporary bridges and divert water from the areas to be dredged and allowing efficient removal of material from the project site. This week (January 11), shoreline restoration and habitat improvements began in the lower lake. In the weeks to come, they will begin dredging and hauling material out of the lake.
More details about the LORE project can be found on the city’s website at ElkRiverMN.gov/LORE.
Winter Recreation on Lake Orono
Many residents utilize Lake Orono over the winter months for recreation, but please be aware of different conditions this year. Using snowmobiles and ATVs on the frozen lake is permitted under state law. However, with the dam gates open, water is flowing similar to a river. Please be sure the waterway you are recreating on is completely frozen as many areas within the lake basin has open, flowing water and variable conditions that charge by the hour.
Also, be sure to avoid the project areas where New Look Contracting, Inc. will be actively working (LORE Project Area Map). These areas need to be maintained and undisturbed by the community for the safety and success of the project.