Shoreline FAQs

Shorelines - Frequently Asked Questions

The DNR requires a permit for all riprap installations on Gilbert Lake. Please see information about the permit process at this link.

Many properties may have trees along their shoreline that have died due to the high water level. Before removing any trees, you need to contact Todd Wahler, Director of Waushara County Land Conservation and Zoning at 920-787-0453. He will send someone to look at your property, make an evaluation, and mark trees that can be removed.

Native shoreline plantings, such as those that have been installed on six lake properties through the Healthy Lakes grant program, prevent erosion of the shoreland area. Native plantings improve wildlife habitat, slow runoff water, and promote natural beauty. These plants have very deep root systems, far deeper than ornamental bushes and flowers and non-native plants. If there is sufficient interest among lake property owners, we will apply for a Healthy Lakes grant in 2019 for 2020. Information was provided at the Annual Meeting on July 6. If you are interested, please contact Karen Reynolds. For more information on Healthy Lakes, click here.

Ben Mott, the Waushara County Conservation Warden, has indicated that sandbags can be used to prevent erosion at the shoreline. They can be brought in filled, or you can use your own sand and fill them, but you can’t do very much of the latter or it would be considered to be a dredging project, which is subject to restrictions and permitting. He says that it is best to bring them in filled from the outside, or fill them from a source away from the water.

In either case, when the water recedes and they are no longer needed at the shoreline, they cannot be emptied into the water or emptied onto your shore, even if you used your own sand. You must remove them from the shoreline area, because of the prohibition on adding sand to your beach.

Please be aware that sandbags may erode over time, so if you use sand from a source away from the water, this could have the effect of eventually dumping this sand into the lake.

The county’s Emergency Management Director cautions that the bags are very heavy when filled – about 40 pounds – so this is a strenuous activity, and sandbags are not available from the county, because their supply is intended to protect homes.

Instead, the County’s Emergency Management Director recommends hydrabarriers, which can be reused. They are available from Amazon.

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