Now Time for Something Really Special

This is the time of year when Lake Havasu City literally has something going on every weekend, and a lot of it centers around our namesake lake. So no matter your marine interests – in fact, whatever floats your boat, you’ll find a great upcoming event in March and April which are some of our busiest months of the year. Grab that PFD and head out (just make sure it’s a PFD – PDFs don’t float very well).

26th Annual Lake Havasu Boat Show, Apr. 7 to 9

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Elsewhere in this issue we told you how to receive free tickets to the 2017 Lake Havasu Boat Show. If you like things that float and go fast, or even if you like to relax on the water at a leisurely pace, the 2017 Boat Show is not to be missed.

Now a well established Havasu tradition, this is the largest consumer boat show in Arizona and Nevada attracting over 9,000 and more than 120 exhibitor/vendors exhibiting more than $25 million in boats, trailers and marine accessories. Don’t miss this opportunity to see the latest from Advantage, Caliber 1, Cobra, Conquest, DCB, Domn8er, Eliminator, Hallett, Howard, Interceptor, Nordic, Shockwave, Ultra, and more. Boat Show title sponsors are JetRenu and Mohave State Bank.

Also featured: an on-site demo dock with a wide variety of boats available for test rides. There’s no better way to learn what recreational boating is all about than to be on-the-water and experience it first-hand.

The Boat Show will also play host to the 5th Annual Lake Havasu Regional Chili and Salsa Cook-off, and the 4th Annual Jettribe Lake Havasu Open of Watercross / Gary Hart Memorial races (see related story). Primary sponsor of the Cook-Off is Havasu Regional Medical Center.

There will be food courts and beer gardens on-site. Pet lovers can bring their sea dogs so long as they’re leashed. After all, as they saying goes, every dog has its day, right?

Read more here: http://www.golakehavasu.com

Jettribe Lake Havasu Open of Watercross / Gary Hart Memorial, April 7 to 9, 2017

They remind us of angry bees buzzing around a nest. But to personal watercraft fans,
the 4th Annual Jettribe Lake Havasu Open of Watercross / Gary Hart Memorial, an IJSBA-sanctioned event, is the wildest show on the water. Held in conjunction with the Lake Havasu Boat Show, the action features some of the best PWC racers from the Western U.S. and Canada. This is the second stop on the 2017 Jettribe West Coast Series and everybody is hungry for points and podium finishes.

Fans will be treated to two days of closed course (short track) racing on a tight multi-turn race course. Sixteen-plus classes of PWCs will be featured including the Pro Ski GP, Pro Runabouts, Vintage classes, and up and coming stars of the sport in the Junior classes. Great weather and a great location, combined with a concentrated pool of talented racers, make Lake Havasu a prime spot to hold this high caliber event.

The action starts both days at 9 a.m. with a tight, twisting Watercross course right in front of Windsor 4 Beach for maximum spectator viewing.

The Gary Hart Memorial race is named for the legendary former owner of Jettrim of Lake Havasu, and avid PWC racer and supporter. Gary would be proud of this one.

Learn more at http://www.golakehavasu.com

Lake Havasu Hosts U.S. PWC Freestyle Championship, Apr. 29

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Personal watercraft (PWC) are like the Swiss Army knives of the marine world.
Lifeguards use PWCs equipped with rescue platforms; rescuers use them to pick up flood survivors; PWCs are used for law enforcement; even the U.S. Navy uses these speedy little craft for target practice. But it’s when PWC are used in racing ….. now that sets our heart aflutter. Just don’t call them Jet Skis. READ MORE

You see, Jet Ski, like WaveRunner or Sea-Doo, are brand names. Jet Ski, in particular, a registered trademark of Kawasaki, has become a generic term for the sport, just as Kleenex, also a brand name, is generic for facial tissue. The correct terms is personal watercraft.

But whatever you call them, PWC Freestyle is the one of the fastest growing adrenaline watersports since the invention of the personal watercraft. The U.S. PWC Freestyle Championship is the tour that separates freestyle competition from high-speed racing on personal watercraft.

Spectators are welcome as riders perform in two-minute routines. Best Trick riders have two attempts to perform their trick. Each competitor is judged on variety, difficulty, execution, flow and number of tricks by a selected panel of judges.

It’s not uncommon to see unbelievable aerial maneuvers, back flips, barrel rolls and submarines all happening just offshore in front of Tinnell Skate Park, Rotary Community Park.

Learn more at http://www.golakehavasu.com

Lose Something Overboard? There’s Hope!

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No better way to ruin a day on the lake than to drop your precious iPhone overboard. Or earrings. Or your wedding band. Or, good lordy, your $12,000 Rolex President Day-Date watch. Don’t laugh. It’s happened. But there’s hope!

Nothing underwater surprises dive shop owner Joel Silverstein, an instructor-trainer who’s seen everything down there during periodic clean-ups of the Channel and Copper Canyon. He and his crew have located sunglasses, wedding rings, in fact, almost anything you can lose overboard. Since opening Scuba Training and Technology in 2004, he and his staff are often called to retrieve lost items.

“So long as man has sailed the seas, his stuff has fallen overboard,” he tells us. “Boaters forget that they’re in a dynamic environment. Whatever you put down is likely to shift to the other side of the boat, or overboard.”

For $100 to $300 per hour whether they find it or not, his staff can search for lost valuables. Success depends upon carefully remembering where the item was deep-sixed.

“Mark a waypoint on your GPS immediately after you hear the splash. Or at least, remember three points on land – port, starboard and astern or forward – to help us locate it,” Joel says.

“Remember that if you lose that necklace going 60 mph, you could be 1,000 feet away before you realize it’s gone.
“Sometimes we use metal detectors, sometimes underwater sonar, in addition to specialty tools. It could result in locating your item in five minutes, five hours, or sad to say, never.”

His advice for not losing a valuable in the first place? “Go easy on the alcohol. Pay attention to what you’re carrying, buy those floating life preservers for keychains, iPhone and sunglasses, and clip things down with bungees or carabiners.”

He continues, “Remember, you probably shouldn’t be jumping wakes in a PWC wearing your grandfather’s Rolex. There’s one in the lake we’re still trying to locate.
“As we see it, nothing on the bottom of the lake is lost. It just hasn’t been found yet.”

For services that can help locate your precious heirloom, view:
http://www.havasusafety.com/safety-services/diving-services/

For information on scuba diving in Lake Havasu, see:
http://www.golakehavasu.com

Free Boat Show Tickets Available on Marine Association’s New Web Site

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Are you smarter than a mussel? You can test your aquatic invasive species knowledge and receive two tickets to the 2017 Lake Havasu Boat Show, Apr. 7 to 9. This is just one new feature of the Lake Havasu Marine Association’s newly revamped website.

The Lake Havasu Marine Association is a group of local marine businesses dedicated to providing a safe and clean lake and river environment for all boaters, as well as encourage the development of various amenities that will enhance the boating experience out on the lake.

To this end, they recently revamped their web site to provide recent news, buoy maintenance, the Hire a Captain program that could keep you out of jail, Contact Point/280 Development, boat launch hours and fees, efforts to keep the lake and beaches clean, Sticker a Mussel program, and much, much more. You can even find Desert Storm Shoot-Out class records. Bookmark the www.lhmarineassn.com website today and refer to it before you arrive.

Now about those free tickets:

Take a simple seven question quiz testing your knowledge about helping to prevent the spread of harmful aquatic invasive species (AIS) to other fresh water lakes and rivers. Then click the submit button to receive a return email with the correct answers so you can see how you did, plus a private link allowing you to print out your two complimentary admission passes to the 2017 Lake Havasu Boat Show, a $10 savings.

You’re welcome, CVB.

Take the challenge here:

http://lhmarineassn.com/take-ais-challenge.html

Backwater No-Wake Restriction Lifted

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In May 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service implemented a wake restriction on a one-half mile backwater area north of Mesquite Bay in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge. The decision was met with some degree of concern from the local community as it effectively closed motorized boating in an area that had been utilized by recreational enthusiasts for decades. But despair not. Here’s the good news.

As a result of recent discussions with parties of the Memorandum of Understanding to Facilitate Collaborative Regional Administration of Lake Havasu (whew!), the Service has reconsidered the 2015 no-wake designation of the one-half mile backwater on Havasu NWR.

Effective this month, the one-half mile backwater no-wake restriction has been lifted. Visitors are asked to use caution while enjoying the area and to follow existing boating regulations and applicable laws as well as exercising proper etiquette on the waters.

The Colorado River is a dynamic and continually changing river. Over time, backwater areas are created that alter flow and direction. Managing recreational opportunities on an ever-changing river can be challenging.

Dr. Benjamin Tuggle, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services (USFWS) Southwest Regional Director, said, “Our responsibility as a Refuge is to protect the natural resources of that refuge, but our other responsibility is to be part of the community.”

The Service will continue to evaluate how to best meet and balance the needs of wildlife and Refuge visitors alike. We’ll keep you posted.

Learn more about Lake Havasu boating rules and safety at http://www.golakehavasu.com

Rubba Ducky, You’re The One – Win a Free Trip

Dallas Finch, Owner of the Rubba Duckys
Dallas Finch, Owner of the Rubba Duckys

This is so cute, we can’t even stand it. You and your friends or loved ones are invited on a Rubba Duck Safari to visit some of the lake’s most scenic attractions. Drive yourself in a rigid inflatable boat (RIB) as you follow a guide – the Mother Duck – who provides fascinating details about the lake. Now here’s the best part: come up with a boat name and win a free trip for four.

Captain your own center console Rubba Duck watercraft on a fun-filled, interactive, guided tour. This marine adventure is lead by an experienced guide who will take you for 2-1/2 hours through the famous Bridgewater Channel and out to the scenic open waters of Lake Havasu, including Pilot Rock and Balancing Rock. Explore secluded and hidden coves and be amazed by the beauty of Copper Canyon, searching for wildlife along the shoreline.

There are seven 3- to 4-passenger boats and one lead duck in the parade, with names like Moby Duck, Duck Tape, and Quacker Jack. Take a swim along the way; non-alcoholic beverages are included.

Now for the Fun Part: Name That Duck

Pick a new name for the newest boat in the fleet, and you could win a Rubba Duck Safari for four people. Just enter your suggestion onto www.facebook.com/lakehavasucityarizona/ by January 30, 2017. Head Mallard Dallas Finch will pick the winning name and notify the winner. No purchase is necessary.

All tours leave from 402 English Village. Rates are $69 per person (two passenger minimum), single manned craft $119 per person, including gas and 20 minutes of Rubba Duck boat driver education.

Compared to this, other lake tours aren’t what they’re quacked up to be.

For more information, contact Rubba Duck Safari at 928 208 0293 or view:

http://www.golakehavasu.com/activities/tours/rubba-duck-safari.aspx

There’s a Whole Lotta News at Lot 4

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Officials at the Arizona Department of Transportation and Arizona State Parks are about to increase boat launch capacity by 33 percent with a new fourth launch ramp at Lake Havasu State Park. But that’s not all: things will get a lot easier on your feet this Labor Day.

In addition to the new ramp between Lot 3B and Windsor 4, and reduced wait times, the ramp is v-notched for added traction. The new construction also includes an additional 72 over-sized parking spots on the east side of the access road, more restrooms, and a new exit out of Lot 4 that will ease traffic congestion. It is expected to be completed by late summer.

But that’s not all! Thanks to volunteers at the Lake Havasu Marine Association, the complimentary golf cart shuttles, so popular last Memorial Day and Fourth of July, will return for Labor Day weekend. The shuttles will cut the long walk between parking and the launch ramps. As we all know, even a quarter mile of walking can be a hassle on hot asphalt with a bunch of kids and coolers in tow, especially when the overflow Windsor 4 parking area is called into service.

While the service is free, tips are gratefully accepted – the funds are used to pay for the golf cart rentals.

For information about the lake’s launch ramps, log onto:

http://www.golakehavasu.com/activities/boating/marinas-and-launch-ramps.aspx

House of Reps: “Don’t Box Us In”

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The U.S. House of Representatives passed an amendment in mid-July that would prohibit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from using federal funds to restrict recreational tubing, waterskiing or wakeboarding on Lake Havasu.

No changes are likely to occur on the lake until the legislation meets approval by the U.S. Senate, and is signed into law by President Obama.

“I’m pleased to see the House pass my bipartisan amendment and instruct the service to reopen Lake Havasu for all users,” said the amendment’s primary advocate, Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ 4th District).

“The irresponsible and arbitrary boating restrictions made by the Service in May of 2015 should alarm all Americans who value the rule of law and a government that is accountable to the people it serves.”

In May 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service expanded a no-wake zone in Lake Havasu National Wildlife Refuge. The restrictions drew city and county administrators’ disdain by inconveniencing boaters without any advance public notice, Gosar said, and was implemented two days prior to Memorial Day weekend.

Last April, Fish and Wildlife submitted a proposal that would effectively close large areas of the Refuge to motorized watercraft out of concern for the Refuge’s shoreline and wildlife. Those restrictions, however, could do irrevocable harm to the region’s recreation-based economy.

“This half-mile area is a place where families taught their children to ski and wakeboard,” Gosar said. “Several special needs children no longer have a safe place for these activities. Instead, these restrictions have created a safety risk as more people have been confined to a smaller space with boats traveling 70 miles per hour.”

Read the complete story here:

http://lhmarineassn.com/amendment-on-lake-havasu-restrictions-passes-u-s-house/

NOAA Forecasts Don’t Get Better Than This

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Boaters may not realize that there’s a website that provides weather conditions specific to Lake Havasu City. Want our advice? Bookmark this.

The readings, issued by the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Las Vegas, are taken three miles west of Lake Havasu at an elevation of 446 feet and predicts such factors as the temperature, relative humidity, heat index, dewpoint and sky cover in increments of 48 hours.

“Temperatures, rain and humidity are fairly consistent, but the ability to receive wind forecasts is invaluable – it has the most influence on the boating experience,” says Jim Salscheider, president and CEO of the Lake Havasu Marine Association.

“Be sure to check it before you go out, even if you plan to be a spectator at an event on the lake. You’ll have a good idea of how to prepare for the conditions and what to bring.”

The LHMA eventually hopes to receive a grant to install a weather buoy on the lake. Until then, the NOAA website is the next best thing.

View the current forecasts here:

http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?lat=34.4814&lon=-114.3705&unit=0&lg=english&FcstType=graphical

Boaters: We’ve Got Your Back

 

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Aerial View of John’s Rock

John Gallagher, a deputy sheriff from Palmdale, Calif., was pulling his daughter on a wakeboard going about 20 mph in his 23-ft. Commander when it struck a previously unknown rock near Black Meadow Landing, about 17 miles south of the city. Attention Boaters: what happened next is a perfect example of how the Lake Havasu Marine Association has got your back.

When John hit the rock, his boat came to a violent stop. “It felt like the motor exploded and it fell out of the bottom of the boat,” he tells us.

TowBoatUS arrived shortly thereafter. They told him they both lived and worked on the lake every day and had never seen the rock before. Being in law enforcement, John felt compelled to report the hazard and called the Lake Havasu Marine Association and Arizona Game & Fish. Both his calls were returned within days.

“One of the issues on Lake Havasu is no agency has ‘buoy responsibility’ on the California side of the lake. No matter, the Lake Havasu Marine Association (LHMA) and AZ Game & Fish sprung into action, soon joined by AZ State Parks,” said Jim Salscheider, president and CEO of the LHMA.

Within two weeks a buoy was placed to warn of the hazard, Jim tells us.

While insurance is paying for the boat repair, John Gallagher says, “I’ve been coming for 12 years, so this won’t stop me, I’ll be back on the lake as soon as I can.”

Meanwhile the LHMA has decided to name the obstacle “John’s Rock.” Gallagher is humbled by the honor.

“I realize it’s not Mt. Whitney or Shasta. But it’s kind of cool having a landmark named after you. It’s only about six inches above the water level, but now it’s my little piece of earth.”

He plans to return soon to pay homage to his namesake foe.

Join a Clean-Up Right Here in River City, Sept. 24, 2016

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The 4th annual Castle Rock Water Trail Paddle and River Clean-Up is your chance to give back to Mother Nature. You’ll never believe what they’ve removed from the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge in the past.

Last year during the clean-up, volunteers pulled out an entire dock that got stuck in the backwater area. Others found plenty of soda cans and even abandoned boats. Now here’s your chance to join the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and volunteers as they collect litter and debris along the shoreline of the refuge.

Meet Saturday, Sept. 24 at 7:15 a.m. at Castle Rock Bay in the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge behind the Walmart (off Vista Drive). You’ll receive free use of a kayak or canoe, plus plenty of trash bags to fill with whatever flotsam and jetsam you can find between the launch point and Mesquite Bay Central (London Bridge Road). When you finish, a shuttle will transport you back to the start. Or bring your own kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard. The clean-up will be followed by hot dogs for all volunteers.

According to Catherine Bell, Wildlife Refuge Specialist, “You never know what you’re going to see along the three-mile clean-up route – possibly Great Horned Owls and various birds.

“We’re also gratified that there seems to be less and less garbage in the water. That means our visitors have a lot more respect for the fragile environment,” Bell says.

The event is being held by the Havasu National Wildlife Refuge, in partnership with the Friends of the Bill Williams River and Havasu National Wildlife Refuges, and is scheduled annually in observance of National Public Lands Day – a signature event of the National Environmental Education Foundation that promotes both popular enjoyment and volunteer conservation of public lands.

Every little bit helps keep Lake Havasu and the Colorado River clean.

For more information: Marge Penton, secretary@billwilliamsriver-havasufriends.org, and Dee Dee DeLorenzo, 928 758 2707, or the golakehavasu.com webpage for the event.