Protecting and Preserving Black Lake and the Surrounding Watershed

News & Events

Information of interest and concern to members and everyone on the lake that the Black Lake Association receives is posted on the Black Lake Cheboygan MI Facebook group page. Some examples include notices about water level, any harmful algae blooms, fish stocking and monitoring, and meeting announcements.

Posted on October 11th, 2019

Launch Ramp at Black River Marina Site Open

The following message was received from Keith Cheli, October 10, 2019, re the opening of the launch ramp at the site of the former Black River Marina.

Good Morning –

Good news, as of today the improved launch ramp at the Black River Boating Access Site is open for public use.

Please note that a vault toilet and skid pier for the ramp will not be installed until next spring 2020 so site users will need to be prepared to make the necessary accommodations in the interim. Also of note is a new vehicular maneuvering pattern on site. When entering the site, follow the “one way” traffic signs which will take you around the north side of the former marina store and concession building. Continue driving around the east side of the building and pull up along the south side of the building. This maneuvering pattern will allow an easy back up maneuver nearly straight on to the new ramp. It is important to note that the site access (and temporary orange construction fencing) will provide for all traffic to remain on public and not private property. If you haven’t visited [the visited] the site recently you will notice improved conditions that include dilapidated dock and finger pier removals, limited shoreline stabilization, new gravel and grading, removal of the store from porch and deck, site cleanup of tires and containers and basic site directional signage.

Furthermore, this week we received approval of our funding request to move forward with site environmental cleanup. We have begun the administrative process to organize this effort which will be our next priority. Our goal will to complete the site cleanup next spring/summer.

Thank you, we will continue to provide updates to this group as information becomes available.

Keith Cheli, Landscape Architect
Regional Field Planner
MDNR Parks and Recreation Division
Cheboygan Field Office
120 A Street
Cheboygan, MI 49721



Posted on February 20th, 2019

Black Lake Association Members Gain New Lake Knowledge

Two members of the Black Lake Association, Director Dave Turzewski and member at large Dominic Bragg are presently taking the Michigan State University Extension class entitled, Introduction to Lakes. It is designed for lakefront property owners, lake users, local government officials, managers and educators. They are studying lake ecology, watersheds, shorelines, Michigan water law, and aquatic plant management. This knowledge will certainly be beneficial for our beautiful Black Lake.

Dominic Bragg and Director Ron Dulak will also be attending the Shoreline and Shallows Conference: Impacts of Waves on Shorelines held at Michigan State University in March. They will be focusing on high-energy waves impact on shorelines, lake levels, native plants along shorelines, and fish responses. The information they bring back to our lake should be very useful to Black Lake property owners.

Posted on November 1st, 2017

Watershed Academy Monitoring Session

Several members of the Black Lake Association recently participated with Onaway High School students in a Watershed Academy Monitoring Session led by Eli Baker and Maria Affhalter from Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council.  Dave Turzewski and Ron and Sharon Dulak donned waders to spend a day with the students performing water chemistry tests and assessing stream macroinvertebrates to determine the health of Stoney Creek and its watershed.  Not only was their time with the students fun and educational, but the outcome indicated that Stoney Creek is healthy.

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Posted on June 6th, 2017

Black Lake Association at Work Protecting Black Lake

Two Surveys Scheduled This Summer

Shoreline Survey

The Tip of the Mitt (TOTM) Watershed Council will begin the first phase of the Black Lake shoreline survey in mid- to late June, according to Matt Claucherty, Tip of the Mitt Monitoring and Research Coordinator. The shoreline survey process will include assessment of the greenbelt (vegetative buffer), shoreline erosion, and cladophora algae growth (nutrient pollution). The survey will identify possible problem areas that may be a result of septic tank leakage, over-fertilization of lawns, or inflow from nearby tributaries. You’re likely to see a kayak or two in front of your property, with the occupants taking pictures and making notes while the information is being collected. Matt encourages you to ask questions.

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Posted on March 9th, 2017

P-11730 – Alverno – Black Lake Levels Testing

The testing to bring the headpond (at the dam) down to the 608.5 mark began this past Sunday (March 5, 2017). By 6:30pm that day, we had the spillgate at Alverno open to 13 inch height opening and the units running at about 60% gate opening (and cavitating). Flow indications had flows (total) from the spillgate and units (powerhouse) at a combined flow of 950 cubic feet per second (cfs). However, please note that these flow measurements taken from a computer table for spillgate opening and wicket gate opening and were made several years ago when the headpond was at the 612 mark, or a head differential between pond and tailrace level of approximately 18 feet. Since the pond was actually at 608.5 and the head differential (from headpond to tailrace level) was at about 14.5 feet on Sunday, really the flow, therefore is reduced by approximately 20% to the 760 cfs mark.

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Posted on March 5th, 2017

P-11730 – Alverno Dam – Black Lake Levels Concerns

Good Morning All:

Further to Jim Tucker’s email,  I think Jim meant to say on Sunday afternoon when the temperatures get mild from this current cold spell, we will move the head pond down from its current level of 609.89 to the 608.5 level and hold it steady there.

We will do that for 48 hours into Tuesday afternoon. It appears that we will have until Wednesday afternoon for mild weather, then it will be turning frigid again. If we find that the lake level continues to drop, we will likely maintain the 608.5 until Wednesday.

However, we will assess after 24 hours and after 48 hours. We do believe with the warm temperatures Sunday and Monday that the Kleber dam outflow will pick up again.

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Posted on February 23rd, 2017

Black Lake Sturgeon 2017

BLACK LAKE–The Lake sturgeon is an ancient fish species that inhabits large river and lake systems in the Great Lakes Basin and elsewhere.

These monstrous fish can grow up to 7 feet long and weigh 200 pounds, providing Michigan hook-and-line anglers trying to catch them an extraordinary thrill.

They are the largest fish native to the Great Lakes, and because of habitat loss – mostly the loss of spawning habitat by the creation of dams – and overfishing in the past, the lake sturgeon is a threatened species in Michigan. Specific regulations limit sport fishing and no commercial harvest is allowed.

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Posted on February 14th, 2017

Upper Black River Dams Meeting

On February 11, 2017 the Department of Natural Resources and the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, along with a team of University of Michigan graduate students conducted an open forum meeting at Forest Township Hall. The purpose of the meeting was to gather information from the public and to hear their concerns related to the possible closing and removal of the Tower and Kleber Dams and begin a conversation that would help the decision making process.  The meeting was attended by about 100 citizens and representatives from the Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council, Huron Pines, Sturgeon for Tomorrow and the Black Lake Association.

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Posted on February 4th, 2017

BLA Partners with the Black River Hydro Limited Partnership

The Black River Hydro Limited Partnership (BRHLP), operators of the Kleber, Tower and Alverno dams, hosted a meeting on February 2, 2017 at the Forest Township Hall in order to present their operating history for the past 20 years and answer any questions that the public had.  Their report will be available on the Black Lake Association website within three weeks (

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Posted on December 22nd, 2016

Black River Marina Update

Keith Cheli, Regional Field Planner of the DNR Parks and Recreation Division, informed us on December 19, 2016, that they had received notification that the Michigan Resource Trust Fund application, for the proposed acquisition of the Black Lake Marina, has been recommended for approval.

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