Lake level too low for yachts

Colac Yacht Club committee member Steve Cartwright, left, stands next to a pole at the Colac Yacht Club boat ramp where the lake’s shoreline reached in October, before water levels began to drop. Also pictured is commodore Adam Chambers.

Water evaporation at Lake Colac looks set to force Colac sailors 35 kilometres away to finish their racing season at Lake Purrumbete.

The sailors have become familiar with racing at Lake Purrumbete since 2014, following 13 years of low water levels preventing Lake Colac from hosting sailing races.

But fleets of yachts and dinghies made a long-awaited return to race at Lake Colac in October, with lake levels at a 1.5-metre depth.

“It’s been really fantastic to be back on Lake Colac. We did make it through and complete all our competition races here on the lake up until Christmas,” Colac Yacht Club commodore Adam Chambers said.

But Mr Chambers said warmer weather meant the lake’s water was now too shallow to get many of the club’s bigger boats from trailers, and the club would likely finish the remaining three months of the season’s racing at Lake Purrumbete.

“Essentially we sail as a club, to sail here when 30 per cent of the fleet can get out and then have a percentage that cannot; that’s not what we’re about,” he

“Even though it is disappointing we have to go to Purrumbete for the rest of the season, we still think the lake is in a good position to build on the depth until next season.”

Mr Chambers said the lake had lost 30 centimetres since October and now had an average depth of about 1.2 to 1.1 metres.

See Today’s Colac Herald for more.

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