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Low water levels pose problems for Northland boaters

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TOWER, MN-- The water levels of one of Minnesota's largest lakes are uncharacteristically low for this time of year.

Lake Vermilion's water levels have dropped by over a foot due to dry conditions in the Northland.

Dan Carnicom, General Manager of Gruben's Marina on Lake Vermilion, has taken measures to counteract the low levels and said other residents and resort owners on the lake are doing the same.

Though extending docks and adding buoys may help, for the time being, Carnicom said that the only proper solution is consistent rain.

"One of the larger issues, though, would be if we got a sudden downpour, it'll all run off quick," Carnicom said. "Might help the lake, but we also still have that critical fire danger."

These low levels present a difficult obstacle to overcome for boaters in the area.

Ward Wallin, Assistant Area Supervisor for the Minnesota DNR, shared some of the issues these low levels pose.

"We're concerned that some of the boaters when they load their boat, they're power loading, and it's creating a little bit of a hole at the bottom of the planks," Wallin said. "There's been some reports of some folks getting their trailers stuck, so it's getting pretty concerning for us."

Despite the conditions, Wallin stated that water traffic in the area has been very high.

The Minnesota DNR has advised boaters to take caution, noting the extremely low water levels.

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Michael King

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