FAQ

  1. What is a drawdown and why is it done?
  • To enable Brookfield to conduct FERC-mandated testing and maintenance at the dam, we lower the level of the lake an extra 5 feet in elevation to right below the sill of our roller gates.
  1. How often is it done?
  • Every 5 years, due in fall of 2021
  1. When will the water level start to drop?
  • Typically, we wait until after Labor Day weekend to begin drawing the lake down. On a typical year, we lower to Elevation 1179 by October 1 but with a drawdown, we have to lower to 1174. The generation schedule, the elevation of the lake, and our plans regarding the drawdown are subject to change without prior notice due to changing electrical grid and weather conditions.
  1. What elevation will the lake go down to?
  • Approximately 1174
  1. When will the water come back up?
  • The lake level raising back up is completely dependent on whether it rains after we get the lake to 1174 and go into a plant outage. In previous years, we have experienced a lack of rainfall that kept the lake low past December.
  1. Are all rocks and shoals marked with hazard buoys on the lake?
  • No, all rocks and shoals in Lake Wallenpaupack are not marked. Only the ones that are considered hazardous in a normal year during normal low water of 1179 are marked. For this reason, you should be extra cautious if boating during the drawdown. Check the boating guide map posted on our website for marked areas. In general, you should avoid any areas around islands during low water.
  1. Am I required to remove my dock early from the lake?
  • While you are not required to remove your dock from the lake early during a drawdown year, we highly recommend doing so to prevent it from being left high and dry on mud. Also, many boat ramps are not accessible during a drawdown and could hinder your chance of removal. Please check with your community because many of them require you to remove your boats early so they have time to remove their docks.
  1. What types of work can be done while the water is down?
  • If you qualify, some work that can be done include shoreline stabilization, dredging, and boat ramps, paths and steps below the normal high water mark.
  1. How do I obtain permits for work to my permitted shoreline (stabilization walls, steps and paths, boat ramp maintenance, dredging, etc.)?
  • To apply for a nonstandard permit, you will apply to Brookfield first by using the application posted on our website. We will walk you through the process, including obtaining permits from the county, if applicable. As the legal landowner, you must start with Brookfield first.
  1. What is the normal high water mark and why does it matter?
  • The normal high water mark is the level the lake normally reaches by June 1 of each year (Elevation 1187’). The normal high water mark is typically not the property line. Any work done below this level requires special permission and permits.
  1. Are there fees for permits to do shoreline work?
  • Brookfield’s nonstandard permit has a $300 nonrefundable application fee. This fee is waived for certain work that qualifies.
  1. Is there financial help available for work?
  • Brookfield provides annual funding to the Lake Wallenpaupack Watershed Management District for their Cost-Share Grant Program, which provides money to projects in the Lake Wallenpaupack watershed that will help protect water quality. For more information, visit wallenpaupackwatershed.org