Lake expected to be closed for few weeks

Published 5:42 pm Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Dallas County Lake, located in Sardis, is closed and in the process of hiring a new lake manager, a process that is expected to take about another four weeks.

The last manager of the lake stepped down, in part, because of health issues. The interview process for hiring a new manager is complete, but there are still some final steps that have to be completed.

“We are hoping to have the lake open in about four weeks,” Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources district fisheries biologist Christopher McKee said. “We planned on opening it Feb. 1 and we apologize that it is not open yet.”

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The new manager will have a lot of responsibilities when it comes to the lake. For one, Dallas County Lake had 7,100 anglers fish the lake in 2013, so there’s a lot of traffic to keep up with.

Plus, the lake manager maintains the grounds and issues permits, but McKee said those things are only part of the job.

“When the anglers finish their day of fishing, anything they take home with them the manager weighs,” McKee said. “He reports that back to us so we know what regulations to place on the lake and we know if what we are stocking is being caught out of the lake.”

While the lake is closed, renovations are being completed to clean up the grounds. A new roof has been put on the concession building and a lot of painting has been done.

“We are trying to get the maintenance done on it before we reopen,” McKee said. “We don’t want the new lake manager to come into a run down building and that sort of the thing.”

When the lake is reopened, McKee said it will have a lot of big fish in it. He said compared to the rest of the state the lake will have high numbers of two to four pound fish and high numbers of fish over four pounds.

“When we open the lake up, the crappie fishing will be excellent,” McKee said. “There is large crappie in the lake and there is good numbers of them so anglers could expect to catch crappie up to two pounds out of the lake.”

McKee said there should also be above average size blue gill and large mouth bass in the lake.