Readers Write: Quagga Concern
August 22, 2008
Crater Lake will not get Quagga mussels. We will. Do you want to know the difference? Crater Lake does not allow private boats, period. Oh boy, I was unpopular before; now it’s going to get worse. But I strongly believe this is the ONLY way to stop the threat of Quagga and Zebra Mussels.
I appreciate the thought of washing stations at the boat launch areas, however they are too many and too close and there are too many private launch areas pier to pier. If you are going to use washing stations they should be at the bottom of the mountain, we only have 5 roads into the Lake this would be much easier to handle staffwise and much smarter.
If the mussels get into the Basin, even at a washing station, they are too close. EVERYTHING (even a checkpoint and a washing station) has a failure rate and we just can’t chance it. We need to make it illegal to bring outside boats onto the lake. This is the only way we can effectively stop the threat.
We can’t take time to try other measures, we need to stop the mussels now. Then we can research and teach. It is a horribly unfair and unpopular thing to do but it needs to be done. There is no other way, no halfway measure and NO CURE.
If you have a boat on Lake Tahoe leave it here, if you don’t have one here don’t bring an outside boat in. This should apply to Prosser, Stampede and Boca as well even though they don’t directly flow into Tahoe they are way too close and they do flow into Pyramid.
I present a plea to the TRPA. Please have the courage to make this horribly unfavorable ruling, and make it TODAY. A 50 percent solution is not a solution at all, it is an excuse for not doing the tough stuff. I respectfully request that TRPA take a short hard look at the problem and the ONLY solution. After all 250 miles is where the mussels have been discovered most recently. Five hours is all it would take for the first mama mussel to get here and then we have a very big, very incurable problem.
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I know that I can muster strong support for your organization to make this ruling. Please do. I believe that if our tourists, visitors and summer residents truly love Lake Tahoe they will gladly make this sacrifice. Lake Tahoe is too precious to destroy.