AS OF APRIL 18TH 2009, NO SIGNIFICANT PROBLEMS ECOUNTERED
Jim did our first, full, cabin patrol in late November. No cabin intrusion or damage was discovered (although we are aware of two episodes of animal intrusion that occurred in mid-late October). We will carry out patrols throughout the winter, with emphasis on post-storm timing and/or if we hear of any problems in the vicinity. Jim Drennan, David Durein, William Demus, Carl Einarsson and Tom will be doing patrols this winter.
JANUARY and FEBRUARY: Again, no cabin damage noted on the latest patrols.
MARCH and APRIL: Again, no cabin damage noted on our latest patrols.
There is an extremely heavy and dense snow pack on Echo Lakes Road and around the South Shore cabins. A Mountain Democrat article this week reports 198% snow pack / water content at Echo Summit. The lake is still solidly frozen. Unless we have a run of warm weather (hopefully with some rain) it is very unlikely that we will be open for Memorial Day. We will re-evaluate the situation just before the ELA meeting on May 6th. (See below)
Echo Lake 4-22-06
Past and Future Crew
Cabins in April 2006
MAY 4th UPDATE:
Following a week of warm weather there has been some snow pack reduction in the Echo Lakes area. Nevertheless, what remains is significantly above normal for this time of year, and this includes a heavy build up in front of the Chalet and around the boathouse.
Whether we can successfully plow in for Memorial Day remains problematic, and heavy water inflow into Echo Lakes will delay the placing of flashboards by E.I.D. This is reminiscent of last year when we had unloaded the boathouse but could safely leave boats in the harbor due to low water levels.
Echo Road and Berkeley Camp Spur
Echo Road Cabin 5-4-06
We will update the website on a weekly basis until we have a firm opening date in mind.
Jim, Jen and Bella on patrol
As usual, we will inform individual cabin owners of any problems discovered on winter patrol.
DECEMBER 2005 - FEBRUARY 2006
Mostly good news: We were blessed with mild weather for most of the end-of-season closure activities. There were, however, a couple of impressive windstorms which caused damage to boats in the finger-pier area. In low-water conditions boats may be unable to float with the wind-induced wave action, and can bottom out in the harbor. The waves can then wash over the stern or gunnels and sink the boat. Watercraft may also ride under a pier and cause damage to the boat and dock. This is a reminder to please exercise caution when docking a boat in the spring or fall.
Sorta bad news: With the (long-time) passing of an agrarian school calendar, we lost many crew members before Labor Day, and were rapidly reduced to a three, then two, then a one-person operation. Nevertheless, we did manage to wrap up the Chalet's winterization procedures before the Thanksgiving holiday.
We are trying out a different pattern of winter storage for our rental boats and multiple trailers. Hopefully the equipment will remain secure and not sustain snow damage (we'll find out next spring). In any case, it does make the main pier much more attractive, and less cumbersome (no trailers to climb over). Note the (repaired) 3rd section of the boom next to the ramp. It will be re-attached next summer.
Late October 2005
December 13, 2005, Thin ice over 80% of Lower Echo
Winter patrol picture for Cole (2004)
Cabin patrols are conducted by Jim Drennan, Tom Fashinell, David Durein, and William Demus
For cabin-owners not on our list, I would offer the following reasons for "signing up":
1. It only costs $60 / year (and we intend to maintain this low rate for the foreseeable future).
2. We do on-site minor repairs at the time of patrol (no extra charge), and will notify you immediately if there is a need for follow-up / materials / special tools / snow-shoveling / etc. etc.
2. It may lower home-owners insurance rates, if you notify your agent of the patrol service (sort of like the discount for an alarm system).
3. We do watch over the general area when not on formal patrol (yes, you can benefit from this even without being on our list, but we might be more inclined to tackle an intruder if we felt responsible for your cabin's well-being / contents ....).
4. It makes us very uncomfortable to walk by a cabin, notice something amiss, and not report it. In the past six years we have had several occasions to give unsubscribed owners a "courtesy call" about problems we have found, and those calls seemed to have fallen into a category of "no good deed goes noticed". SO, we will make every effort NOT to look at the cabins off the patrol list. This is reminiscent of the military policy of "don't ask, don't tell".
5. Last but not least, the patrol gives Tom an excuse to get some badly needed aerobic exercise.
IF YOU ARE INCLINED TO SIGN-UP FOR CABIN PATROL SERVICES PLEASE E-MAIL TOM OR KAT: email@example.com
South-facing view above Dartmouth Cove 12/9/03
Looking East towards the Chalet 12/9/03
A reminder of our late start this year: Lower Echo Lake as of 5-30-03
2013-2015 CRITICAL WATER SHORTAGE:
Two years ago we sent the following letter to all Chaletlee guests. For 2015, we had no output from our horizontal wells, and the aquifers had not recovered by the end of our season.
July 6, 2013
To all Chaletlee guests:
As many of you know, Echo Chalet is dependent on spring supplied water and we are currently experiencing a severe water shortage. Last year’s snowpack was just 17% of normal and the current inflow to our spring is equivalent to what we typically see in September.
This has placed our Chaletlee operation in jeopardy for the remainder of the summer and we wanted to let you know both where things currently stand and what we propose to do.
First, in order to maximize our chances of staying open and protect your reservation, we are not accepting any new reservations for the balance of the summer. Second, we are doing all we can, along with our guests, to conserve water. Third, we’ve made an emergency request to the Forest Service to allow us to install an additional water storage tank. This would allow us to buy water to serve the store thus safeguarding more water for the Chaletlees.
Unfortunately, none of these measures guarantee that we will be able to keep the Chaletlees open all summer. We very much regret the uncertainty this brings to your summer plans but we wanted to write now so that you could make alternative plans.
Here is what we suggest…If you wish to cancel, we understand and will provide a full refund. Just let us know as soon as you’ve made this decision. If you want to keep your existing reservation, we will keep you apprised of the situation and let you know as soon as possible if we have to close the Chaletlees. In which case we will of course provide a full refund.
Last, as some of you know, we’ve tried for years to work with the Forest Service to develop environmentally sound strategies to backup our existing spring system. We’re hopeful that we can find a way forward to accomplish that and will keep you posted on those efforts as well.
Again, we very much regret this potential disruption in your summer plans and we appreciate your patience as we jointly try to work through this difficult situation.
Tom and Kat Fashinell