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Lake Projects

This is a summary and map of projects around Rice Lake that were toured by Stearns County officials during August 2011. The project summaries were updated in July 2014.

  • Stop 1 was the Crow river inlet/outlet. 

  • Stop 2 was the Von Bank stabilization project. 

  • Stop 3 was Schauman's Bay and the curly leaf pond weed and west public access. 

  • Stop 4 was the Pirz lake inlet with beaver control issues. 

  • Stop 5 was protection of undeveloped land. 

  • Stop 6 was contrast between developed lakeshore and natural lakeshore.

  • Stop 7 is the Klassen hill erosion project. 

  • Stop 8 is the Anderson natural shoreland restoration at their own expense.

  • Stop 9 is the Fishers Resort inlet which was monitored for the TMDL study. 

  • Stop 10 is the Taylor steep water front project to replace aging concrete.

  • Stop 11 is Camp Ojibway planting.

  • Stop 12 is the washout behind the Peters property from the farm field uphill.

  • Stop 13 is the Hickman-Notch project to prevent rainstorm runoff. 

  • Stop 14 was the final stop for sedimentation discussion


Rice Lake Associations has been involved with many projects around the lake that affect water quality.  RLA monitors the water quality twice a month with readings taken in the same locations and has the samples tested.  This task has been ongoing for the last nine years.

Rice Lake was declared an "Impaired" body of water in 2008 which then mandated that a TMDL study be undertaken as part of the Federal Clean Waters Act.  The North Fork Crow River Water District then hired Wenck and Associates to undertake the study. The TMDL study has been finished and the results in April 2012.  The study was approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in May 2012.  Wenck and Associates published a separate Implementation Plan, defining steps to be taken by responsible parties to improve Rice Lake water quality in June 2012.  Both the TMDL Study and the Implementation Plan are available on this RLA website for viewing or downloading.  They are also available on the MPCA site.


RLA supported the NFCRWD as it inspected the septic systems on Rice Lake. All failing systems were brought up to code so there is no direct discharge into Rice Lake. There were 186 systems inspected and 33 needed to be repaired or replaced. This took place over two years: 2009-2010.


RLA partnered with Stearns County to renaturalize the shoreline at Camp Ojibway. This is an ongoing partnership with the Camp to demonstrate how attractive and beneficial a natural shoreline can be. The planting was done over Memorial weekend in 2008 with 40 volunteers from both the Camp and RLA.


RLA sponsors two miles of the highway clean-up between Eden Valley and Paynesville on Highway 55.  The clean up was begun in 2005 and continues.  


Mid-Summer rains after the Fourth of July in 2011 led to high water levels which contributed to shore erosion problems around the lake.  Stearns County created a bulletin regarding repair.


AIS Watercraft Inspections were started at the two DNR ramps located on Rice Lake in May 2013.  Led by NFCRWD and KLA, DNR trained inspectors were hired to enforce AIS laws at public boat ramps on the lakes in the NFCRWD.


The Mueller project was completed in the summer of 2013. The project created an embankment to prevent further run-off from farm properties into the North Bay at the Klassen property.  Years of run-off had carried enough soil into the lake to created peninsula and altered the shoreline. The project was funded by a grant from SWCD and contributions from NFCRWD, KLA, RLA, the Muellers and the Klassens.

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