Monday, January 13, 2014

Your Darling is Back!

Thanks to Dennis Hunger for having Don Kline spoke about Lake Darling State Park. Don is a retired Iowa DNR fisheries expert.

Don brought an aerial map of the Park that shows the lake in green, because the water is drained and somewhat of a prairie now.

Don noted that virtually every major feature of the Park has been worked on over the past few years, and some going on right now while the Park is closed to the public. He said when the Park reopens this summer it will be like a new State Park.

  • The road is being repaved, including the parking area by the boat ramps and the new Day Lodge by the beach.
  • The campground area has been completely redone, including accommodating larger modern campers.
  • The dam has been rebuilt. It should hold water now.
  • The Lake is being dredged to remove sediment.
  • The lake level will be raised several feet to allow for more water in the Lake and better fishing.
  • A new bike trail will wind around from the campground down to the south end of the Lake.
  • New handicapped accessible fishing piers.
  • Planning to build 3 new year-round, 2-bedroom cabins. The selected site was chosen to be close to the existing campground but away from archeologically sensitive areas. Funding for the cabins came from Friends of Lake Darling, the DNR, and the Washington County Riverboat Foundation.
  • 3 additional cabins are planned by 2016 for a total of 6 year-round cabins.

The developed area on Lake Darling's south side is seeing a lot of improvements.

Don Kline takes Lake Darling very seriously.

Kline said that the annual economic impact of Lake Darling (when it is open) on the area is about $8 million. He said that the new cabins will rent for about $300 per week. After a couple more years for the fish to grow, the fishing will also be great.


January 16, 7:00am: Rotary Board Meeting, WCHC
January 16: Club Forum!
January 23: Paul Horak - planning for Blood Drive!
January 30: Jim Gorham - TBA
February 6: Steve Schlabaugh