We all have an interest in keeping our lakes clean, our area beautiful, and sustaining the amazing quality of life we enjoy here — now, and for generations to come. On this page, you'll find various programs, initiatives and volunteer opportunities that directly contribute to these goals. We hope you'll choose to get involved; it's a great way to do good work, meet some wonderful people, make a real difference, and have a lot of fun in the process.
The lakes study (see section below) reported one invasive species of concern currently present on our chain — the yellow iris. Led by the hard work of Gary Engstrom, the TLCA board has embarked on efforts to educate our membership, identify the sites, and effectively remove the species. The PDF above will provide you with an update on our progress. Thank you all for your continued concern and diligence!
Turtle Chain Lake Management Plan
Since TLCA was created, our top priority has always been preserving and replenishing the fishery, preserving the quality of the water and watershed, and improving the general ecology of the lakes. To that end, the TCLA partnered with the town of Winchester on a Lakes Management Plan, to assess our current status, alert us to any issues (such as invasive species) and create a plan for addressing any issues, should they be identified.
Click on this PDF for the latest, updated report (July 3, 2021).
Please see below for a brief history and the results of the program.
2014: The Town of Winchester approved a four-year phased lake management plan. The first phase involved Harris and Hiawatha Lakes.
2015: Phase I. Harris and Hiawatha Lakes were studied.
2016: Phase II. Birch, Rainbow and Tamarack Lakes were studied. With the Turtle Chain next up, the TLCA members in attendance at the annual meeting overwhelmingly approved our participation in Phase Three.
2017: Phase III. A grant application was submitted and approved to help offset study costs. Study underway of entire Turtle Chain of Lakes by Onterra, LLC.
2018: The final report was completed! These PDFs contain the results:
HELP PROTECT OUR LAKES!
Join our enthusiastic, intrepid crew of volunteers who strive to keep our chain free of invasive species! CLICK HERE to find the volunteer opportunities and PDFs that support these efforts.
2021 CBCW PICNIC:
Kneeling (L to R): Nancy Williams, Phil Williams, Darryl Osikowicz. Standing (L to R):Gary Engstrom, Barb Engstrom, Ed Sattersten, Steve Budnik, Jim Hochstetter, Jean Sattersten.
Turtle Rock Rag
The Turtle Rock Rag is our bi-annual source for news around the chain. Members receive "The Rag" via email, and latest issues (and archives) can be accessed here!
Your one-stop information hub for everything from our bi-annual newsletter to lake rules to helpful invasive species guides, all available in an easy-to-download-and-print PDF format.
Invasive Species Guides
Print and carry these handy PDFs with you when boating on the chain and hiking the shoreline, so you can identify, manage and/or report any flora that can harm our lakes.
Lake User Guides
Helpful information to guide everyone on lake usage and courtesy, by the Town of Winchester and the DNR.
Volunteer Forms - Boat Landings
Once your sheets are filled, please submit them to Emily Heald, Water Program Coordinator at the North Lakeland Discovery Center or any of our Lake committee members: ROCK LAKE: Steve Budnik and Gary Engstrom / NORTH TURTLE: Laura Giffin and Jim Hochstetter/ SOUTH TURTLE: Tom Rued