Placer County is closing boat trailer access to an unauthorized boat launching site on Lake Tahoe’s West Shore. For a number of years, boaters have used the beach at the end of Grand Avenue to launch into Lake Tahoe. The closing of this historic boat ramp is at the request of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA).
TRPA now requires that all watercraft and trailers launched into Lake Tahoe be inspected for aquatic invasive species. Unless there is an inspector present to check all watercraft and trailers, TRPA code states that the owner of any boat launch into Lake Tahoe must close the launch. Placer County, which owns the beach, does not staff inspectors at the site.
There was a boat launch at one point at the site. However, that fell into disrepair a number of years ago and the remnants of that structure do not meet the requirements for use as a launch. Because boats are now launched at this site across the beach, the site does not have best management practices in place. A lack of BMPs can contribute to declining water quality in the lake.
Beginning Friday, July 10, 2009, large boulders will be placed at the edge of the beach to prevent trailers from being driven into the lake to launch boats. Boaters who are unaware of the ban and drive down Grand Avenue will be able to turn their rigs around and leave the area.
The beach is still open to the public. Kayaks and other small watercraft can still be carried across the beach and launched by hand. Placer County reminds boaters that there are numerous boat launches around the lake that have inspectors present to check all trailer-launched watercraft for invasive species. These inspections will keep unwanted aquatic life out of the lake and improve its health.