BOR Berryessa Field Office: 2018 Accomplishments

Concessions

One-year extension of Interim Concession Contracts at Steele Canyon, Spanish Flat and Putah Canyon Concession Areas (11/13/18)

Transition and Renewal of Contract Agreement - Pleasure Cove Marina was purchased by Suntex Marinas. Reclamation is working with Suntex management to ensure proper future planning, contractual amendments, and contractual obligations.

Camping has remained highly desirable at the Lake Berryessa concession areas. Most weekends were 100% full except for those affected by the fire and smoke. Overall visitation at the lake was down in 2018 due to those conditions.

Visitation

2017- 650,000   

2018- 450,000 (estimated)

Government Operations

The Lake Berrryessa Field Office (LBFO) initiated a proposal to implement the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act (FLREA) which would allow Reclamation to charge entrance fees for previously free facilities.

Three public scoping meetings were held in Fall 2018. The scoping period remains open through January 21, 2019.  The Regional Director will make the final implementation decision. If implementedt, Lake Berryessa facilities will begin charging day use and boat launching fees at Oak Shores Day Use Area and Capell Boat Launch in spring 2019. As a recognized fee site, Reclamation will also be able to sell and honor a number of passes to federal public lands.

Facilities

Received an additional funding amounof $400k to replace two of the 5 tile roofs at the administrative complex. The two roofs scheduled for replacement are the administrative and maintenance buildings.

Pursued ongoing partnership with Tuleyome to complete construction of the North End Trail, and 7.5 miles of other hiking facilities at the lake.

Rangers

Rangers are acting as point of contact for updating the shade shelter rental information for Booz Allen Hamilton, the  contractor maintaining the web site Recreation.gov. Recreation.gov is your gateway to explore America's outdoor and cultural destinations across the country. 

People  can purchase tours and tickets, search for camping and lodging, and reserve day-use facilities or purchase permits for limited use experiences.

Developed a birding VIP program to monitor herons, eagles, and wood ducks. Four volunteers observed nine eaglets in five nests this season.

Greeted 906 travelers on State Route 128 at the Monticello Dam Program.

Presented education programs at Oak Shores Day Use Area to more than 200 students.

Staffed information tables at Napa and Solano Ag Days for local elementary students. Contacted more than 600 students.

Participated in World Environment Day at Markley Cove with 96 volunteers and organized Coastal Cleanup Day with a record number of 106 volunteers.

Presented Waterways Education Programs to 625 elementary students at Lake Solano County Park.

Participated in the 2017 Winters Salmon Fest. Contacted 253 participants. Led free fishing days and a C.A.S.T. for Kids Event.

Led ranger-guided kayak programs for the public and UC Davis students.

Initiated ranger-guided hikes and bike programs on the North End Trail.

Attended Yolo Bypass Duck Days. Spoke with 225 participants. 

Attended job fairs at Pacific Union College.

Natural Resources

Acting Natural Resources staff is active while administration is filling the permanent position.

Working with staff at Mid-Pacific Region. Secured $65,000 for new boat to conduct survey work/patrols in managing aquatic invasive species.

Attended prescribed fire workshop.

Coordinated with other staff on North End Trail improvements.

Met with Napa County Open Space District regarding Berryessa Vista Trail improvements.

Held multiple meetings with Fire Chief Aaron Latta regarding prescribed burns.

Fire Management

Reclamation employees dealt with relocations, detours, or smoke exposure from the Atlas, County, Steele, and Snell Fires in FY2018

Installed Oak Shores Day Use Area’s first Fire Danger sign to help raise awareness of the risk for wildfire throughout the fire season.

Working with the Concession Managers, Reclamation ensured that no fires were permitted during Red Flag warning days. Thank you to them for keeping our lake safe.

It will be required for resports to ban all fires on Red Flag days in 2019. To avoid starting fires with sparks, make sure trailer chains are secure and are not dragging!

Partnerships

Thank you to Napa County Sheriff’s deputies for ongoing coverage and training provided to LBFO.

Thank you to CalFire for ongoing efforts in an ongoing fire season.

Thank you to Tuleyome for continuing to see our North End Trail project through to completion.

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pKilkus@gmail.com                       © Peter Kilkus 2018