Who opened the outflow? | Page 2 | SoWal Forum - South Walton Florida
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Dawn

Beach Fanatic
Oct 16, 2008
916
367
So basically no one cares that the outflow was dug open, correct?

I guess that's part of Customary Use to dig it open each visit, turn the clear blue, green water to brown (brackish), and not worry about how others feel as they watch it turn in front of them.

I care, but not because of the silly reason you state. Or because you are trying to find one more silly thing to pin on the sheriff. I care because it alters the natural rhythm of nature. But the truth is that rhythm is forever messed up by building on lakes and outfalls.

Once again.

I don't pay much attention.

To anyone.

Who doesn't understand.

What a paragraph is.

:rolleyes:
 

Bob Wells

Beach Fanatic
Jul 25, 2008
3,184
1,169
Have you gone and sat down with your duly elected sheriff and discussed your concerns and issues?
 

sunny850

Beach Lover
Jul 16, 2012
58
47
John, are you sure it was dug out and it didn't open on its own? I haven't looked at it since Thursday but a neighbor and I were just saying Thursday afternoon that it looked like it was about ready to open up. The lake has been extremely high and there was not much sand between the lake and Gulf. It wouldn't have taken much. Just asking...
 

joho

Beach Fanatic
Aug 5, 2005
1,111
162
Now's a good time to clean the debris along the edges of the lake. Is that something the county could take care of?
The tires, appliances, and other debris have accumulated in the lake for years. There's rumor of a Mercedes after a hurricane too.
 

Lake View Too

SoWal Insider
Nov 16, 2008
7,034
3,504
Eastern Lake
JB, I can't say for certainty they are at the accesses to each outflow, but there has been one at my outflow for at least 15 years. It's just another sign in the glut of signs.
 
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FactorFiction

Beach Fanatic
Feb 18, 2016
494
409
Both Oyster Lake and Allen Lake were full to the brim and the outfall was overdue to break out. There is a tremendous amount of water shed into those two lakes even when there hasn't been much rain on the beach. Code enforcement, beach patrol, and TDC all run up and down that area regularly, albeit at unpredictable times. My understanding is that cameras show the outfall breaking out in the early am hours (2am ish) with no sign of people on the beach, much less any vehicles. As you mention, there is a beach cam and both residences on either side also have cameras directed to view the outfall.
Nobody on the beach loves it when an outfall breaks because of the discoloration of the water. If folks around the lakes were having problems, the DEP would allow an emergency opening, but it is unlikely to occur in the wee hours of the morning.
 

Everytime

Beach Fanatic
Jul 9, 2005
439
113
Shelby County, Alabama
John G:

I'm with you on this after what we saw the week of June 11-18.

We were setting up each day on or near the Eastern Lake "isthmus" between the lake and the Gulf. The isthmus was slightly higher than the lake level there, and the lake was very shallow to the north back past the Eastern Lake Rd public access (knee deep to an adult through much of it).

Some days the high tide would slightly, gently and NATURALLY connect the Gulf water to the lake water, usually on "red flag" days, and push the clear/emerald Gulf water into the shallow part of the lake. Most days it remained closed and the isthmus was a true isthmus, a narrow strip of land surrounded by two larger bodies of water.

On Sunday, June 18, we got out there in the afternoon, and the south end of Eastern Lake was waist deep and at times higher once you sunk your feet into the soft, unstable sand on the floor - against the strong current towards the Gulf! We noticed the man made opening to the Gulf where the lake water was shooting out into the Gulf's red flag waves like a water park flume into a wave pool. The isthmus was gone and gradually caving in from the east and west of the outflow.

I asked some people nearby when it opened, and they said some kids did it around 10-11 that morning. They said a Sheriff's beach patrol unit had come by and looked at it and asked who did it - so since it's a state statute, I'd think that the Sheriff's Dept, as a county subagency of state government, would have jurisdiction over that issue. The signs that Lake View Too mentioned are posted at the end of the Eastern Lake Rd public access boardwalk. Who else would people call to report it, some office in Tallahasses so they can send a helicopter over, or send a highway patrol officer out on the beach in his Dodge Charger?

It definitely made an impact on the natural flow of the lake and Gulf. Also made the lake floor unstable and the current dangerous for smaller kids, and made the lake and area impassable for Sheriff, lifeguard and beach services vehicles.
 

FactorFiction

Beach Fanatic
Feb 18, 2016
494
409
John G:

I'm with you on this after what we saw the week of June 11-18.

We were setting up each day on or near the Eastern Lake "isthmus" between the lake and the Gulf. The isthmus was slightly higher than the lake level there, and the lake was very shallow to the north back past the Eastern Lake Rd public access (knee deep to an adult through much of it).

Some days the high tide would slightly, gently and NATURALLY connect the Gulf water to the lake water, usually on "red flag" days, and push the clear/emerald Gulf water into the shallow part of the lake. Most days it remained closed and the isthmus was a true isthmus, a narrow strip of land surrounded by two larger bodies of water.

On Sunday, June 18, we got out there in the afternoon, and the south end of Eastern Lake was waist deep and at times higher once you sunk your feet into the soft, unstable sand on the floor - against the strong current towards the Gulf! We noticed the man made opening to the Gulf where the lake water was shooting out into the Gulf's red flag waves like a water park flume into a wave pool. The isthmus was gone and gradually caving in from the east and west of the outflow.

I asked some people nearby when it opened, and they said some kids did it around 10-11 that morning. They said a Sheriff's beach patrol unit had come by and looked at it and asked who did it - so since it's a state statute, I'd think that the Sheriff's Dept, as a county subagency of state government, would have jurisdiction over that issue. The signs that Lake View Too mentioned are posted at the end of the Eastern Lake Rd public access boardwalk. Who else would people call to report it, some office in Tallahasses so they can send a helicopter over, or send a highway patrol officer out on the beach in his Dodge Charger?

It definitely made an impact on the natural flow of the lake and Gulf. Also made the lake floor unstable and the current dangerous for smaller kids, and made the lake and area impassable for Sheriff, lifeguard and beach services vehicles.
I believe that Eastern Lake has a "trigger point" authorized opening, meaning that when the water rises to a certain elevation, the County has to notify DEP, but then can open the outfall. Oyster/Allen Lake does not have a "trigger point" permit, but several of the outfalls do.
 

Everytime

Beach Fanatic
Jul 9, 2005
439
113
Shelby County, Alabama
From my observation of the northern shoreline (across 30A) during the week, the level looked low, so I don't think it was near that trigger point (plus I doubt the kids got DEP approval!).
 
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