Red Rock Lake pictures
Water Level and bogs
The city of Eden Prairie utility department is working hard to keep the outlet that helps maintain the water level clear in Red Rock. The system connects Round Lake to Mitchell Lake to Red Rock to McCoy and then into Starring Lake. The outlet which is by the boat landing has been getting clogged with organic materials (weeds and gunk). Isaac who is in charge of the system opened up the access to the drain for me and showed me how well the water is flowing. Speculation is that the ground is so saturated with water that the system can’t keep up. Red Rock has many storm sewer inlets as well that add to the problem. The city will continue to monitor the outlet and check for problems. See a map of the system here.
Also due the high water many pieces of the “bog” from the north side of the lake have broken free and created a Super Bog down by the launch. The city has been contacted and hopefully the bog will be removed soon.
Watershed awareness document posted. Document contains some good contact information.
Red Rock lake being de-listed from the MPCA Impaired waters list
The MPCA has identified Red Rock lake as one of two lakes in Minnesota to de-list from the impaired waters list. One of our passionate board members Bill Satterness has written a document that provides the MPCA with 3 reasons Red Rock should not be de-listed. Read more about this here.
Snails and Swimmers Itch?
Lots of snail shells have been floating around in the lake and ending up on the shore line. According to Michelle at the watershed these are “Chinese Mystery Snails”. The “Mystery” part of their name comes from the fact that they have a large reproductive pulse in the spring, and suddenly large numbers will be seen. There isn’t any current management for them.
According to what I know about their life-cycle, that often die off in large numbers in the spring or summer. With luck, this should be a one-time event this summer (fingers crossed for you).
These snails can be the end host for a parasite that causes “swimmers itch”. If you spend any time in the water on Red Rock or other local lakes, it’s always a good idea to shower off ASAP when you get out of the water. We have been in the water many times recently and have never been affected.
More information about swimmers itch can be found here - link.
People have asked if these snails are Zebra Mussels - they are not and so far Zebra mussels have not been found in Red Rock. Here’s a link to the DNR site that provides more information on them.
No harvesting this year - 2016
Waterfront Restoration will NOT be harvesting shorelines this Summer. If you have prepaid for this service and have not received a refund please contact them. Link to website.
Lakeshore regulations - Best practices
Please make sure to follow the rules and regulations regarding shoreline management as provided by the city of Eden Prairie and the watershed district. One of the most ignored regulations is to not honor the 50’ shoreline impact zone. Some will also refer to this area as the scenic easement zone. Trees, shrubs and other native plants are critical components of a healthy shoreline and should not be removed unless deemed diseased or dangerous by the local authorities. Here’s a link to the city of Eden Prairie’s water management plan.
Red Rock Cleanup Day - Saturday, April 16th - 9:00 am.
Meet at the boat launch/park for treats and coffee and help cleanup the lake. You can come by boat, canoe, kayak, car, or walk over. It always surprises me how much garbage we find every year. If you can’t make it, please spend a few minutes cleaning up your shoreline. Remove any garbage from the shallow water and shoreline and try to keep organic matter from getting into the lake - please don’t blow or rake leaves into the lake. If you find something in the water you need help removing, please send me a note and we’ll do our best to come and get it.
Riley Purgatory Bluff Creek Watershed district survey
Dear Friends of Red Rock Lake,
We need your help. Our fragile, shallow lake is under assault from the normal ravages of nature, pollution, and politics. We have made great progress over the past few years since the formation of our volunteer group FORRL: Friends of Red Rock Lake. But we need to continue our work to preserve the lake.
Currently the Riley-Purgatory-Bluff-Creek Watershed District (RPBCWD) is conducting a survey to help shape its new 10 year plan. If there are limited responses about Red Rock Lake or if the responses somehow indicate things are fine with the lake it will most likely rank low in priority in the new long-range water management plan. We strongly encourage everyone to complete this survey by April 24, 2016. The survey can be found here: http://www.rpbcwd.org.
Ice out on the lake was reported as March 16th, 2016.
As the weather warms up and everyone is anxious to get outside, take a few minutes and walk down to the lake. Enjoy the trumpeter swans and the muskrats, then spend a few minutes cleaning up your shoreline. Remove any garbage from the shallows, rake leaves and other organic matter away from the shoreline and try to keep a native barrier between any grassy areas and the lake to help with run off.
A few new links have been posted.
The FORRL Board has a new member and some leadership. Thanks to Bill Saterness for his incredible job leading FORRL for the last few years! Anyone interested in helping out and joining the board, please reach out to one of the members. Meetings are typically held once a month. No pressure to join, feel free to join us any time.
Welcome to 2016! Member donations tax statements and Annual dues statements will be eMailed out soon.
Lots of events are on the docket for the Spring and Summer. More information will be sent out as dates and times get determined.
Letter to the editor - Eden Prairie News - Great job Charlie!
Eden Prairie’s lakes are neglected. It seems like it’s been the white elephant in our city for several years now. Living on Red Rock Lake we have seen our own little fishing hole wiped clean multiple times by failures in the aeration systems, suffocating a good majority of every fish larger than 10 inches, but that’s a story for a different time.
The long-term problem facing not only Red Rock, but also all of the lakes and creeks in Eden Prairie, including Staring, Mitchell, Bryant, Riley, Anderson, McCoy and Duck Lake is clear-cutting. Over the years we’ve all seen what increased phosphorus levels bring to our lakes and creeks. With fertilizer being drained into our lakes, it isn’t any wonder that they’re choked with algae and thick mats of weeds, the trick is that people seem unwilling to take small steps to make a big difference in what they contribute to their runoff.
For those who live on a lake or any water body, clear-cutting your property straight up to the shoreline – the most pleasing for those seeking a view – should always be avoided. Water running off your lawn will be unhindered in its flow to the water, along with all of the chemicals and sediments in it. Simple actions can be taken to make a big difference. Planting along your shoreline strategically to decrease erosion and runoff will help, as will using less fertilizer and encouraging your neighbors to do the same. Many people forget that their little pond or creek running through their backyard goes anywhere, but the truth is that a majority of the lakes in Eden Prairie are connected.
Everyone around the city can be taking small, simple steps toward healthier water and lakes in our community that will cause a ripple effect on the surrounding watersheds. It’s our responsibility to ensure that our progeny can enjoy the same benefits of Eden Prairies great lakes, creeks and rivers.
Charlie Regan, 17
Red Rock Fish Stocking
On May 9th, 200 small sunfish and 200 small bass were added to the fish polulation in Red Rock. Thanks to all of our members that have contributed to the association. FORRL will continue to work with the DNR, City of EP and the watershed to make sure the aeration system is operating properly. Please practice catch and release fishing for a few years to give our fishery a chance to mature again.
Herbicide Treatment - applied Wednesday May 29th
The RPBCWD has applied herbicide to about 13 acres of Red Rock. They are targeting curly-leaf pondweed. They recommend not using the water for watering for at least 7 days from the time of application. If you are irrigating using lake water - make sure to turn off your system. Go to the documents page to read the notice from the watershed along with the treatment area diagram. Thanks to the Riley Purgatory Bluff Creek Watershed for making this happen!
Thanks to all of the FORRL members that joined us and participated in the lake wide cleanup on Saturday, April 18th. The pile of stuff pulled from the lake is pretty impressive.
The watershed district and City of Eden Prairie will be implementing both mechanical harvesting and herbicide treatments in Red Rock this year. The plan is still being finalized, watch for more information. As well as lake wide harvesting - lakeshore owners can also participate in private harvesting. FORRL has decided to offer each private owner a $50 incentive to participate in private/lake shore harvesting. More details to follow.
FORRL is working with the DNR to stock some additional fish in the lake. The fish kill in 2014 was classified as a “total kill” and really wiped out the fish population.
Dock sections found - please check out the “Dock Sections” tab if you are missing a dock section or two.
The DNR has stated that Red Rock Lake had “winterkill” again for 2014. Very few fish have been spotted in the water this Spring. 20 prespawn sunfish and bass have been stocked. Likely cause of the winterkill was the late installation of the aerator. The dissolved oxygen level was already below the acceptable “low” level when the city installed the aerator - January 29th.
Thanks to all that participated in the lake cleanup! On a cold windy morning we found lots of stuff in the lake including a tire, balls, old dock pieces and many beer and soda cans. Take a few minutes and cleanup your shoreline. Pull any floating debris out of the water and check the shallow water for any junk - thanks.
2014 is going to be a great year for Red Rock. The board members of FORRL have been working hard to get help for our troubled lake. Presentations have been made to the city council and we have been promised more support from the City of Eden Prairie in 2014.
Stay tuned to more updates and more ideas on how us as individuals can be more responsible lake shore owners - here’s a start:
It's time to renew your membership in Friends of Red Rock Lake. Please fill out the attached membership form and send it with your check to our Membership Director, Cindy Satterness, 8597 Red Oak Drive, Eden Prairie, MN 55347.
We have secured an “Open Podium” time slot with the Eden Prairie City Council on Tuesday, November 19th from 6:30 pm to 6:55 pm to discuss the health of our lake. We would like to have as many residents as possible at the meeting to help convey that the concerns about our lake are shared by all residents.
Here is the presentation that will be discussed -
The objective of this meeting is to cover the following items:
Overarching Theme: Our lake is the most vulnerable in EP
1. Suggesting an updated Use Attainability Analysis study
2. Need assistance in facilitating our relationship with the watershed district
3. Would like the City to work with us on recommendations
4. May need assistance (financial and expertise) in implementing the solution from the City
5. In the future, would like to partner with all EP lake associations and the City
In summary: Your attendance is requested Tuesday, November 19th from 6:30 pm to 6:55 pm, Council Chambers at City Center (8080 Mitchell Road) to support the efforts to improve the health of Red Rock Lake during the Open Podium portion of the City Council meeting.
FORRL Annual Meeting - Monday, October 28th from 7:00 to 8:30 pm at the Eden Prairie Library.
Members of the FORRL Board have been working hard to get the city and the watershed to pay some attention to our troubled lake. Obviously there is no easy fix to bring Red Rock back to the way it was. By taking the time to become a member you are making a statement to the city that you are concerned and expect something to be done.
The FORRL Board also needs more help. Since the association was created a few years ago, the same people have been involved. We need some new talent to join the board. Interested in helping - please send Bill a note or talk with any of the board members.
It's never been more important to get involved with FORRL. If you have joined our lake association - thanks for the support. If you haven't please download the form (below) and mail it in. We need all of the help we can get to clean up Red Rock.
Summer Barbecue - Sunday, July 28th
Thanks to everyone that attended the Summer party - it was a beautiful cool day! Once again Matt Adam with his supercharged, nitro injected, bored out, custom 9.9 hp motor took First place! Look for some pictures (thanks Tom) of the event above.