Boat Count 2014

An excellent reason to conduct a Clark Lake boat count each year is that things change. And 2014 is no exception!

Sun rising behind Eagle Point, shining through fog on the morning of the boat count, July 4th

Sun rising behind Eagle Point, shining through fog on July 4th, the morning of the boat count

The total number of boats on Clark Lake is greater than it has ever been—1,393. That exceeds the previous high water mark of 1,312 in 2012. Last year the number was down to 1,254 only to bounce beyond previous highs in 2014.

Rafts still own the lake. The count reveals 562, up from 523 last year, and exceeding the previous high of 556 in 2012.

Clark Lake has fewer powerboats of various kinds than it did in 1960. In 1960, the total was 436—in 2014, 276. Could it be that people prefer the ease of their increasingly luxurious  rafts over the speedboat experience? The number of outboards, inboards, and jet boats declined. There are more inboard-outboards (I/O’s) this year—128, but that’s less than the peak in 2005 of 172. The number of fishing boats increased to 36, but a whole lot less than the 169 recorded in 1967.

Jet skis grew in number (130), though that’s a long way from the peak reached in 2005 (196).

There are two big gainers in the personally-propelled watercraft section. Kayaks continue to multiply like Clark Lake chipmunks—164 in 2013 to 193 in 2014.  Kayaks have never dipped from one year to the next so that the upward trajectory remains intact.

Bill Tuttle (standing), Jim Tuttle (with hoodie) and Jim Bretes (also seated)

Bill Tuttle (standing), Jim Tuttle (with hoodie) and Jim Bretes (also seated)

A new category enters this year’s count—paddle boards. It’s not that paddle boards haven’t been seen on the lake before, but the current iteration is new to the Clark Lake scene. These paddle boards make it easy (sort of) to stand and paddle and even do yoga or acrobatics on them. The 2014 count reveals 38 of them.

The number of sailboats went from 41 last year to 51 this year. The 2013 count showed 24 Hobie Cats. That grew to 38 this year, perhaps because of the Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta. The number of sailboats in the water at the Clark Lake Yacht Club is 36, but there are 22 more on dry dock on trailers. The Yacht Club indicates that those do into the lake. So there are times when the number of sailboats on the lake gets a boost.

More swim rafts follow the shoreline with the highest number ever of 30, up from a previous high of 26 in 2006.

It’s interesting to compare the number of boats moored at the various clubs to the number at the docks of individual residences. 26% of Clark Lake’s boats are moored at clubs, about the same as last year.

Counting crew member Steve Wawro

Counting crew member Steve Wawro

This percentage depends a lot on the number of lakefront homes—the number used in this calculation is 350. The number of houses likely will continue to decline as lots are combined–with smaller structures coming down and fewer larger structures replacing them.  This will certainly affect the percentage in future years.

There are 2.9 boats per house, and that’s up from 2.7 in 2013.

The total number of watercraft at the clubs is larger than ever—367 in 2014 compared to the previous high of 356 in 2012. The biggest number is at Eagle Point, followed in this order–the Beach and Boat Club (Consumers), the Clark Lake Yacht Club and the Beach Bar.

Because rafts once again are number one, here are some breakouts about where they live. There are 90 rafts at Eagle Point, 59 at the Boat and Beach Club, 59 at the Beach Bar and 1 at the Yacht Club. The other 353 are moored at individual residences.

The boat count on July 4th started at 6 am. The count is traditionally taken on July 4th with the presumption that all boats that are going in the water for the season are moored at docks or the immediate shoreline, by this date.

left to right: Jim Tuttle (in shadow), Jim Bretes, Steve Wawro (standing), Bill Tuttle Iseated) Rick Belcher (not pictured)

left to right: Jim Tuttle (in shadow), Jim Bretes, Steve Wawro (standing), Bill Tuttle Iseated) Rick Belcher (not pictured)

And at 6 am, the vast majority of boats are not in use, promoting a more accurate count. The weather on the Fourth offered a special challenge. It was not only chilly (in the low 50’s), but foggy, especially in the cove on the east side of Eagle Point. But the crew was determined to take an accurate count.

Since 1987, Bill Tuttle has conducted the count. He took over after Bowser Eagy’s passing.  Bowser’s data from 1961 to 1986 are missing and have never surfaced. Assisting Bill for this year’s count were Jim Tuttle (Bill’s brother), Steve Wawro, Jim Bretes and Rick Belcher. Frank and Josie Hones conducted the count in the Pierce’s Bay area. Hugh Harris provided the data for the boats at the Clark Lake Yacht Club.

Below you will find a spreadsheet with lots of detail.  To enlarge, click or tap.  To reduce, click or tap again. Yellow indicates a high number; blue, a low number:

Boat count 2014 07-10v2

 

 

Primary Election – Tuesday, August 5th

Voters will go to the polls on Tuesday, August 5th.  That includes Precinct 2 of Columbia Township which includes Clark Lake.  In the partisan section, voters for each party will decide who will their candidates for governor, US Senator, representative to the US  Congress (7th district), state senator, state representative and county commissioner.  Also on the ballot is a proposal to approve or reject an “amendatory act to reduce state use tax and replace with a local community stabilization share to modernize the tax system to help small businesses grow and create jobs.”  There is section to choose delegates to the county convention. Five Republicans are running and no democrats in Precinct 2.  sample ballot1

 

Here is the second page of the sample ballot. sample ballot2

A New “My Clark Lake Story”

Sue and Doug

Sue and Doug Wiemer in front of “UneedaresT” on Clark Lake’s north shore

Some families at Clark Lake count their time here in years; others, in generations.  Sue Seeger Wiemer’s family is in the latter category.  She writes in My Clark Story “Six Generations of Summer People at Clark Lake.”  Like many at the lake, she shares common experiences that all can relate to.  But what makes each Clark Lake Story interesting is the uniqueness of the Clark Lake experience as seen by each individual or family.  There’s always a new twist.  You’ll enjoy Sue’s story by clicking here.

While you’re visiting My Clark Lake Story, scroll down and catch up on other stories–there’s more in the treasure chest!

Fleet 58 Complete Finishers List

Joe and Kathleen Thorrez won 1st prize in the 18-foot class.

Joe and Kathleen Thorrez won 1st prize in the 18-foot class.

Complete finishing results are now available.  Click here for a rundown of all the Hobies participating in the Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta on Sunday, July 6th.

Fleet 58 Update

As noted on the main page of this website, the Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta attracted 25 competitors.  They relived the storied days when more Hobies sailed Clark Lake than any other lake in the nation.  More info, including order of finish, is on the way.  Stay tuned.

For the most part, the day was bright and sunny.  There was enough wind to create turbo moments when the lucky and skillful were able take advantage of the speed that Hobies are known for.

Check out photos taken on the lake today (it’s expected that more will be added later).  To enlarge any photo, click on it.  To reduce it, click again.  For the finish roster, click here.

Clark Lake Fourth of July Update

Luminaries lining the shores of Clark Lake.  Photo: Jill Bentley

Photo: Jill Bentley

Trish Boyers, of the Raft-O-Rama Committee, reports that 235 of the 350 lakefront homes were equipped with luminaries.  That’s more participation than ever.  And it’s one of the most enjoyable aspects of Independence Day at Clark Lake–as dusk turns to nightfall, the glow of thousands of luminaries line the shores.

Clark Lake was also fortunate to have excellent fireworks again this year.  Typically, Diane Deming wows the lake with her photos of Clark Lake wildlife in Natural Encounters. What follows is her very skilled work as she focused her camera upwards–on the skies above the waters of Clark Lake–on the 4th of July.

New Hobie Number in 2014 Clark Lake Boat Count Sneak Preview

Peggy Collins is holding a valuable piece of Clark Lake memorabilia, on loan from the Beach Bar treasure chest of such items.

Peggy Collins is holding a valuable piece of Clark Lake memorabilia, on loan from the Beach Bar treasure chest of such items.

Hours ago, the preliminary Hobie Boat number was revealed in a sneak preview of the 2014 Boat Count.  That Hobie Cat number is now revised upward to 38.  That’s 14 more than the 2013 count showed (24).  The jump in the number of Hobie Cats is in concert with the Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta, scheduled for 10:30 am tomorrow at Clark Lake.  Full details on the event can be found on this website’s main page.  The buzz at the lake suggests that there will be a strong turnout for the event–for participants, spectators and those attending the Caribbean Buffet at the Pointe Bar and Grill.

The compilation of data from yesterday’s boat count should be completed and posted on this website by next week.  The count took place starting at 6 am, July 4th.  The time and date is by design.  The early hour ensures that the vast majority of boats will be at their docks and not out on the lake.  The July 4th presumes that any boats going in the lake are out of storage and ready for use at shorelines or docks.  The boat count has been under the command of Bill Tuttle since Bowser Eagy’s passing in the mid 1980’s.  Bowser started the boat count in 1959.

Myrtle and Bowser Eagy with Hobie Alter in front of the Clark Lake Yacht Club.  Photo thanks to Peggy Collins and Meredith Szostek.

Myrtle and Bowser Eagy with Hobie Alter in front of the Clark Lake Yacht Club. Photo thanks to Peggy Collins and Meredith Szostek.

A Clark Lake Fourth

Luminaries lining the shores of Clark Lake.  Photo: Jill Bentley

Luminaries lining the shores of Clark Lake. Photo: Jill Bentley

The Independence Day evening started with a glow–luminaries lining much of the shoreline.  That was followed by traditional fireworks launched by individuals around the lake.  And there was plenty of activity out on the lake.

The luminary project is the hard work and effort of the Clark Lake Raft-O-Rama committee.  The team spent countless hours building the luminary kits.  They then distributed them to homes around the lake, for a small donation.  There has been lots of well-deserved praise for the Raft-O-Rama’s great work!

Boat Count Sneak Preview

Bill Tuttle (standing), Jim Tuttle (with hoodie) and Jim Bretes (also seated)

Bill Tuttle (standing), Jim Tuttle (with hoodie) and Jim Bretes (also seated)

The annual Clark Lake Count took place today, July 4th.  If you saw a raft slowly circling the shoreline with five guys equipped with clipboards, pointing at docks, you probably saw the counting crew under the reassuring command of Bill Tuttle, who has championed this cause since Bowser Eagy’s passing in the mid 1980’s.

Not all the results are tabulated yet, but there is an interesting statistic that jumps right out at you, given the activity scheduled for this Sunday at Clark Lake.  A preliminary subtotal shows 34 Hobie Cats at the lake.  That beats last year’s total of 24.   Once the data are compiled the 34 Hobies could grow in number.

It looks like good weather for Sunday and the Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta.  Please check out the details on the main page of this website.

The boat count this morning started at 6 am.  The count is traditionally taken on July 4th with the presumption that all boats that are going in the water for the season are moored at docks or the immediate shoreline, by this date.   And at 6 am, the vast majority of boats are not in use, promoting a more accurate count.  Today’s weather offered a special challenge.  It was not only chilly (in the low 50’s), but foggy, especially in the cove on the east side of Eagle Point.  But the determination of the crew that the count should be accurate  ensures that the results will show statistically reliable numbers.   Once the compilation as taken place, look for a posting on this website under News and Events and also under Vital Statistics/Boat Count.

 

Despite the early hour, there were a number of people with coffee mugs in hand on the their docks, probably wondering what that raft with five guys was up to!

Fleet 58 Reunion and Regatta Only Hours Away!

Hobies are popping up over the lake.  Are they out for a  pleasure cruise or perhaps are they thinking about the trophies to be won on Sunday, July 6th?   For details, see the main page of this website!