Out in the West, water levels are dire. California once again is experiencing another drought, consequences of which are being felt in the fields, at the tap and the boat ramps.

Governor Jerry Brown has asked for $1 billion in emergency funding and state water officials have warned cities need to do more to conserve and even restrict water use.

For recreational boaters throughout the state, low water levels affect access to lakes. The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California recently closed to recreation Diamond Valley Lake, the largest reservoir in Southern California. The move marks the first recreational closure due to low water levels since the 2009 drought.

“This action speaks volumes about the seriousness of the water-supply situation Southern California faces now and next year. That’s why continued conservation is essential,” said MWD General Manager Jeffrey Kightlinger at a press conference reported by NBC Los Angeles.

At Lake Powell, the largest reservoir tied to the Colorado River, parks officials closed the boat ramp at Glen Canyon Dam with National Recreation Area spokeswoman Cynthia Sequannam warning boaters to launch their boats on the lake at their own risk. 

That isn’t stopping die-hard lake fishermen like Wayne Gustaveson from showing you can catch up to 100 Stripers in a day on the lake if you know the right spots. 

Then again, up at Lake Shasta in Northern California, water levels have actually increased since last year, but that’s not saying much as last year reached historic lows. Officials there are reporting lake levels are up 48 feet from last year. This year five of seven boat ramps are open where last year there were only three. 

Yobro10 | Dreamstime.comBoat Ride On Beautiful Lake Powell Photo