Schroon With the exception of a few snapping turtles, almost everyone is hailing the Paradox Creek dam project in the town of Schroon as a success.
“It’s been a great project,” Schroon Supervisor Mike Marnell said. “Everyone on the lake is happy with their beach fronts. I’m glad we were able to do it.”
The dam replaces an old barrier, built in 1937. That hemlock and stone structure was leaking. That caused water levels in Paradox Lake to fall, creating lakeshore and boating navigation issues.
The new dam was designed by local resident Roger Mead with help from Bud Maxwell and the architecture firm CT Male.
The project was expected to cost $115,000, but was completed for $60,000. It includes 96 tons of concrete.
“We did all the work we could ourselves,” Marnell said. “The highway and water departments did a great job.”
Also helping with the project was Dave Whitty, the adjacent property owner. Whitty allowed access to the dam and allowed excavated earth to be placed on his land.
“That was a huge help and saved us a lot of money,” Marnell said.
The new dam includes a fish ladder and allows for migration between Paradox Lake and Schroon Lake.
“Sometimes you can see the fishing jumping,” Marnell said. “It’s really neat.”
The new dam can also be raised if needed to allow regulation of Paradox Lake water levels.
The dam site also allows for public kayak access to the creek and Paradox Lake. The only other public access is at the Paradox Lake state campground.
And what about those snapping turtles?
“They weren’t too happy to have us working here,” Marnell said. “They bit a couple of guys. But I think even the turtles are happy now.”