Dam Issues Are Docking Boaters

SUNBURY, Pa. -- One of our area's most popular boating destinations will see its season cut short.

The state says there are troubles with the inflatable dam that turns the Susquehanna River into Lake Augusta in the Sunbury area.

Emergency repairs are forcing Shikellamy State Park to end its boating season early. After high water in June, park officials noticed air pressure levels dropping in one of the bags on the inflatable Fabridam across the Susquehanna River. Temporary repairs were made, but a more permanent solution needs to be done to keep Lake Augusta.

"This is going to affect a lot of people up and down the river," said park manager Nick Sherlock. "We wanted to get this information out as soon as we can, just to explain to people these repairs are necessary and this is the best way we can handle it.

Repairs to the Adam T. Bower Memorial Dam require water levels to be dropped. Boats that rent slips in the state park marina must be removed by September 3 as there may not be access to boat launches and docks.

"We already had to take it out once this summer. Last year, we had to take it out a good two months early because it was really low. It just kind of cuts the summer short and makes it harder to go out and have as much fun as you want," Forrest Zelechoski said.

Officials say it's important to get the dam finished before the 2020 boating season.

"It takes effect on people wanting to boat and go tubing and skiing, and it's not a good thing, I guess. But I think it's a good idea to get it fixed so we can stay out longer on the water," Michael Scopelliti said.

All other day-use areas of the state park will remain open through the rest of the season.

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