4-Island Lake is a 37.5 acre lake located along the Oak Tree Golf Course. The lake is stocked for fishing enthusiasts. Swimming and boating (sail, canoes, catamarans, kayaks/paddleboards, row boats, and electric boats not in excess of 3 horsepower or 43 pounds thrust, and the propeller is adequately screened) are permitted after registering the boat at the Whiting Center. This recreation area takes pride in its launch ramps, fishing docs, volleyball court, playground, picnic area, and newly renovated bathrooms. The islands are considered a bird sanctuary and are closed January 1st-May 23rd.
Cub Lake is a 9.75 acre lake is centrally located off Bear Valley Road with easy access for events. It offers picturesque picnic areas, walking paths, an outdoor basketball court, playground area, a dock for fishing and model boats, and bathrooms. There are 5 reservable party areas for members and their guests. Adjacent to the park is a leash free dog park. During the summer months, Cub Lake offers “Moonlight Theater” after dark.
Cub Lake: To start not earlier than two hours before sunrise and to end not later than two hours after sunset.
Four-Island Lake: To start not earlier than one half hour before sunrise and end not later than one half hour after sunset.
If interested in more detailed water quality data, please Click Here
04/04/2022 - Recycled Christmas Tree Habitats
By Fred Hicks
Lake Quality Advisory Committee Member (LQAC)
The LQAC would like to thank all the residents that donated Christmas trees to be recycled into our lakes. In total 137 Christmas trees were collected and placed within the lakes creating 27 underwater habitats on January 22nd, 2022. We had 13 community resident volunteers, and 7 volunteers from Kern River Fly Fishers. Kern River Fly Fishers is a local fly fishing club located in Bakersfield that has assisted the LQAC with lake habitat improvement projects. This project utilized multiple trucks with trailers, and three large 18–20-foot boats with outboard motors to place the trees in specific locations. These locations were pre-selected to improve the Young of the Year (YOY) survival rate and increase angler success. The Christmas tree recycling program proved to be a cost effective first step towards correcting the habitat deficiency currently within our lakes.
Underwater aquatic habitats will provide the base building block for a food web to begin. First microorganisms, and small insects attach to the bark and thrive. Small fish are then attracted because of the small organisms upon which they feed. Small fish also utilize the space between the branches and trunks for safety, and shelter. Larger fish are then attracted by the smaller fish which they prey upon. Within the Bear Valley lakes birds, and turtles are at the top of the food pyramid and will utilize these habitats as they feed upon the fish that reside around and within them. Essentially, think of these aquatic habitats as your refrigerator and if you’re like most people (fish in this case) your most comfortable chair is relatively close to the fridge not on the farthest end of the house.
In the accompanying maps you will be able to see the four areas that were selected for the habitat placements. The maps can also be found on the BVSA website at the following address: https://www.bvsa.org/amenities/lakes. The marked locations are accompanied by Google gps coordinates which are also listed so you can easily locate the habitat on your next angling adventure. Each location contains approximately 35 trees over a 30’ wide *30’ long triangle so be careful where you cast if you want to get your lure back. We hope you have a wonderful May and please share some of your angling/lake photos with BVLQAC@gmail.com.
10/1/2021 ARTIFICIAL FLOATING ISLANDS (AFIs)
Lake Quality Advisory Committee - Rick and Linda Flores
One of the things that SOLitude (our lake management consultant) discovered in its initial evaluation of 4-Island Lake, was that there are NO aquatic plants on the floor of the lake. The lake is man made, and it has a hard granite bottom. At one time, there were aquatic plants on the bottom, but it is now a desert. Clean, healthy lakes depend on aquatic plants for improved water quality, erosion control, fish habitat, and algae control (by absorbing nutrients) to name a few.
SOLitude recommended, however, that before pursuing an in-depth planting project, the water quality needed to be improved and stabilized. In the interim, the LQAC has initiated a couple of smaller pilot plant projects in the 7th Hole Pond of the golf course. One is the planting of over 200 waterlilies. The other is the use of Artificial Floating Islands (AFIs.)
AFIs are small man-made floating structures that allow aquatic plants to grow in water that is typically too deep for them. They are mini ecosystems which not only absorb nutrients, but also provide a habitat for fish and other organisms. The idea for AFIs originated in Canada and has since been used in several European countries and Japan, as well as the United States. Elaborate AFI’s can be purchased for thousands of dollars, but our team of innovators analyzed models, and designed and built five to suit our needs.
Initially,using 4” corrugated tubing filled with plastic bottles, PVC hardware cloth, coconut coir (fiber extracted from the husk), and a variety of aquatic plants –members of the LQAC constructed two small AFIs. These were placed in the 7th Hole Pond to see how well they would tolerate the environment/conditions. It took some of the plants a few weeks to recover from the shock of transplanting, but now, they appear to be thriving.
In August, LQAC members constructed three additional AFIs, which are approximately ten times larger than the original ones. Lilies, which had previously been planted in soil (around the perimeterof the pond,) were in jeopardy of drying out, due to the receding shoreline. Therefore, they were transplanted into the new AFIs, and they also appear to be thriving.
Moving the lilies into the AFIs will allow relocation as needed and maintenance as required, while providing an aquatic habitat and nutrient filtration. Once established, some of the AFIs may be moved to 4-Island Lake, where they will be monitored in preparation for larger scale projects.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Lake Quality Advisory Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
4/27/2021 - Lake Restoration Efforts
Lake Restoration in Bear Valley
Attention Residents! The BVSA Board contracted with SOLitude Lake Management to repair and restore our lakes. During the next month you will see workers applying Phoslock® to Four Island and Cub Lakes, as well as Jack’s Hole and the Seven-Hole Pond. This Phoslock® application will sink to the bottom and bind to the phosphorus that is saturating the lakes’ sediment. The excess phosphorus has accumulated since the lakes were created and is a key element responsible for the toxic cyanobacterial bloom last summer and the fish-die-off two years ago which led to lake closures. Phoslock®, along with control of additional nutrients in run-off such as fertilizer, effluent, Roundup, detergents and manure, will keep our lakes open. The application is non-toxic. Please continue enjoying recreational activities in the lake. There are no negative effects on humans, fish, or wildlife. Phoslock® is even applied to drinking water reservoirs. LQAC has posted frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the webpage and are happy to answer any additional questions; please email email@example.com.
Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ’s
How does Phoslock work?
Phosphates in the lake water and soil feed the algae responsible for toxic blooms. The algae are also responsible for using the oxygen in the lake and causing fish die offs. Phoslock is a safe non-toxic clay that is applied to the bottom of the lake. It settles to the lake bed and blankets the soil, absorbing phosphates in the soil and water. Any phosphates that enter the lakes through runoff should also bind to the Phoslock.
Will Phoslock application produce any health and safety issues?
Phoslock is used on drinking water reservoirs. It does not harm humans, pets, fish, or wildlife. Swimmers and anglers can use the lakes, even during application.
Will fish have trouble spawning if the Phoslock layer is on the bottom?
No. Fish can move the layer of Phoslock on the bottom of the lakes and create nesting areas.
Where would the Phoslock be applied? What happens if the layer gets disturbed, like near the shoreline?
Phoslock would be applied to the entire lake. The thin layer of Phoslock over the bottom of the lake may be disturbed by swimmers or anglers over time but will not reduce the effectiveness. Phoslock will continue to absorb phosphates until the binding sites are full.
Can Phoslock be applied incrementally so the burden of the cost can be spread over time?
Application of Phoslock will be most effective if applied in a single dose and bulk costs are significantly lower than purchasing small amounts over time.
It already looks as though algae are growing, what if we have an algae bloom?
If there is an algae bloom, an algaecide will need to be applied to kill the algae before Phoslock can be applied, increasing the cost.
After initial application, how long will the Phoslock continue to work?
It stops working when the product is saturated with phosphate. SOLitude Lake Management is 100% sure that the treatment dosage will reduce current phosphorus and that phosphorus CANNOT unbind. Future problems would be limited to additional phosphates entering the lake.
What if more nutrients come into the lake from runoff?
The Phoslock will bind to additional phosphates entering the lakes until it is saturated. It would take years of additional phosphate to reach the lake levels before treatment with Phoslock.
What if we do nothing?
If we do nothing, the algae blooms, fish die-offs and production of cyanobacterial toxin will continue to cycle each year. The lake will be unsafe for recreational use. We will lose the investment we have made in fish stocking ($20,000 + all previous years) and we will have to pay to refill the lake water. The clean-up of a toxic lake is far more costly than the application to correct the problem.
Additional info and questions can be emailed to the LQAC email at firstname.lastname@example.org