2020 articles

Beautiful Spring weather draws many outside on Monday

Sunny skies, warm temperatures for cure for the winter blahs

North Carolinians enjoying warm temps and sunshine

By David Whisenant | April 5, 2021 at 4:14 PM EDT - Updated April 5 at 6:30 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Did you get outside today? It was magnificent! Blue skies, bright sun, warm temperatures…for many today was the day to shake off the winter blues and enjoy some outdoor activity. Robin Williams may have said it best when he said Spring is nature’s way of saying ‘let’s party!’

Lots of folks around Rowan County were enjoying the weather. The parking lot for the High Rock Lake boat access off Bringle Ferry Road was busy.

Invasive of Zebra Mussels found in NC Pet Stores


County in recovery after strong storms on Thursday

Posted Feb 7, 2020 at 11:56 AM

Davidson County is on the road to recovery one day after severe storms, bringing strong winds and heavy rainfall, throughout the area on Thursday.

Local emergency management and law enforcement said although a majority of flooding and power outages have improved, there were still several problem areas throughout the county Friday.

The Davidson County Airport weather service reported 3.5 inches of rain fell between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. Thursday.


Rowan EMS, Millers Ferry Fire Department provide quick response vehicle to cover High Rock Lake - Salisbury Post

SALISBURY — Rowan County Emergency Services EMS Divison and Millers Ferry Fire Department have partnered to provide a quick response vehicle that will cover the High Rock Lake area, according to spokesman T.J. Brown. A quick response vehicle (QRV) will provide paramedic level emergency response in cooperation with the Millers Ferry Fire

Department. In addition …

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BFL lowers entry fees for 2020

By Tony Garitta

Posted Dec 20, 2019 at 12:10 AM

   The acquirement of Fishing League Worldwide (FLW) by Major League Fishing (MLF) has prompted some changes in Bass Fishing League (BFL) tournaments for 2020. The FLW operates the BFL circuit.

The BFL circuit has now been renamed the Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine. The entry fees have also been reduced. 

Read more..


Collecting garbage: Locals work to beautify High Rock Lake during Clean Sweep

Published 12:05 am Sunday, September 20, 2020

HIGH ROCK LAKE — Rocky Phillips held the white barrel steady as Barry Childers fired up his power saw and cut a chunk off the corner, allowing stale water to drain out to lighten the load.

In order to get to the barrel, which was lodged in a pile of sticks in shallow water on High Rock Lake, Phillips had to strip off his boots and socks and wade through a few feet of chilly water. After Childers sawed off the corner, he helped heave the barrel onto his pontoon boat, adding it to the pile of trash that was quickly piling up.

 Read more..

Will DOT replace St. Matthews Church Road at High Rock Lake?

By Josh Bereron

Published 12:01 am Monday, February 10, 2020

St. Matthews Church Road’s one-lane setup over High Rock Lake will remain unchanged until it’s deemed a high-enough priority in a state ranking system for construction funding, according to N.C. Department of Transportation staff.

So far, that funding has been elusive.

Five years ago, DOT closed the road to vehicle traffic because “the foundation of the 85-year-old causeway has slowly eroded, creating a situation where the road can no longer support the vehicles that travel it every day,” Division 9 Engineer Pat Ivey said in 2014. Though, it later re-opened the road under a temporary setup that narrowed two lanes to one and prohibited commercial vehicles.


The battle for the ramps begins

Each winter the battle for the ramps begins, wherein tournament directors plan their schedules to avoid conflicts with other organizations. There are just so many public boat landings to accommodate the needs of tournament organizations trying to book their events.

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The Lexington Dispatch

Successful fishing depends upon little things

By Tony Garitta  

During the winter months, Capt. Butch Foster, formerly of Lexington and operator of Yeah Right Charters, occasionally departs from his Southport/Oak Island residence to return to Lexington to engage in his first love, crappie fishing at Flat Swamp in High Rock Lake.

Foster recently appeared at Greensboro’s Central Carolina Boat & Fishing Expo, where he gave daily seminars on winter crappie fishing at High Rock.

 Read more....

2019 articles

Health official:  OK to swim in High Rock if away from algal mats

By Ben Coley / The Dispatch

Posted Sep 30, 2019 at 4:15 PM

Although the swimming advisory at High Rock Lake issued by the Davidson County Health Department remains intact, it doesn’t necessarily mean it’s unsafe for people or their pets to swim in the water, according to Janna Walker, a health educator within the department.

  Read more..


By The Salisbury Post

Posted Jul 3, 2019 at 4:44 PM

   SALISBURY — Canadian company Ontario Power Generation has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Cube Hydro, the owners of High Rock Dam and others on the Yadkin River, according to a company news release.

“Once the acquisition is finalized, Cube Hydro will operate as part of OPG’s U.S. hydroelectric platform,” the news release said.

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Rowan County Sheriff’s Office restructures lake patrol

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 2, 2019

SALISBURY — The Rowan County Sheriff’s Office has restructured its Water Patrol Division and will provide seasonal coverage and enforcement on High Rock Lake.

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Rowan County works to enhance its section of High Rock Lake

By Samuel Motley

SALISBURY — People want a high quality of life and the lake can help provide that, says Mikey Wetzel, owner of downtown Salisbury’s Go Burrito, who helped organize a music event today on High Rock Lake.


2018 articles

Salisbury Post 2/21/2018

SALISBURY — As members of the Growing Rowan marketing team spoke during Monday’s county commissioners meeting, one sentiment rang clear.

Rowan County residents are the county’s worst critics, said the team. Its goal is to change that perception.  

Read more..


2016 articles

Salisbury Post 9/23/2016

By Josh Bergeron

SALISBURY — After years of trying, Alcoa has received a federal operating license for its dams on the Yadkin River.

Issued Thursday, the license lasts until March 31, 2055. It comes after nearly a decade of legal battles with state and local governments. Previously, the dams were used to power Badin Works, an aluminum smelter that no longer operates. 

  Read more..


Salisbury Post 12/5/2016

By Josh Bergeron

By Josh BergeronWhen federal regulators granted a long-term operating license to Alcoa in October, the LandTrust for Central North Carolina leapt into action.

Now, the LandTrust is in the first stages of an effort to raise millions of dollars to conserve 4,700 acres of land held by Alcoa. 

Read more..

Alcoa Land Purchase

Land Trust gets grant for Alcoa Land Purchase

Salisbury Post,  Resources Commission must acquire the 2,300 acres along High Rock Lake by September to move forward with fundraising for the remaining 2,400 ...

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Florence’s Impact on High Rock Lake by Larry O. Jones

Considering the disastrous flooding caused by the hurricane, High Rock Lake fared very well. Cube Yadkin used an abundance of caution by drawing High Rock down more than 6 feet below full prior to the storms arrival in this area. River, stream, and runoff flows into High Rock Lake reached an estimated 60,000 cu.ft./sec. This flow, although very high, is only about 12% of the maximum flow the flood gates on High Rock Dam can handle. That’s why FEMA flood zone maps show most waterfront property around High Rock as having a worst-case probability of rising only about 1-2ft. above normal full pool elevation 623.9 USGS (655.0 Yadkin Datum). The Lake came up to 623.6 (654.7 YD) Tuesday after the storm had passed, about 4” below full pond.

The Yadkin River at Yadkin College reached a peak flow of 33,100 cfs at 8:00 AM Tuesday, September 18, 2018, rising 2.82’ above the gage level of 18’ that the USGS has designated “Minor Flood Stage”. That flow brought a lot of debris, floating logs, stumps etc. into the lake, but the water velocity carried a lot of this on toward the dam. Wednesday morning (9-19-2018) the lake was 6” below full, beautiful, silky smooth, and no trash in sight on the main channel.


If the flow rates in “cubic feet per second” (cfs) don’t mean much to you, the maximum inflow into High Rock was about 450,000 gallons per second, or 38.8 billion gallons per day on the 18th. It’s also interesting to note the highest recorded Yadkin River at Yadkin College flow was 80,200 cfs, 33.75’ on gage, on Aug. 15, 1940. The Yadkin College flow station is on the Yadkin River’s west shore just south of the US Hwy 64 bridge in Davidson County.

Major Relief on Pier Repair Permitting - 9.10.18


Cube Yadkin will no longer require a permit for repairs you or your contractor make to your pier or boathouse as long as the repair is “like-for-like”.  Here’s how it happened:

In January 2018 the High Rock Lake Association (HRLA) began receiving a lot of conversation and complaints about permits and penalties arising from pier maintenance.

The HRLA learned that Cube Yadkin met with Inspection Department officials of the five counties that surround the Yadkin Project in early 2018.  After that meeting, Cube Yadkin posted a guidance document covering Cube Yadkin permit requirements along with a new schedule of permit fees.  Cube Yadkin management also made clear that assertive enforcement would be used on 

Badin and High Rock to deal with violations of the SMP and permitting policy. 

The multitude of complaints the HRLA received in early 2018 convinced the HRLA Board to get involved in finding a solution to the problems our members (and non-members) were facing.

Mr. Todd Yates, a Davidson County Commissioner and a member of the HRLA Board arranged a meeting with NC Department of Insurance (NCDOI) Commissioner Mike Causey. Commissioner Causey directed his engineering staff to work with the HRLA to get a full understanding of the code interpretations and permitting procedures. After reviewing our concerns, the NCDOI staff concluded that a lot of commercial code standards were being applied to piers for single family dwellings. Rather than issue interpretation and clarification documents, NCDOI wisely chose to issue a new NC Residential Code, effective July 1, 2018 that is very clear and concise with respect to standards for piers and docks associated with single or two family private dwellings.

Section R327 of the 2018 North Carolina Residential Code provides a defined set of parameters (limitations) for docks and piers that are exempt from the North Carolina Residential Code and the North Carolina Building Code. According to NCDOI, a property owner planning a structure that does not exceed the limitations may submit certification to the County CEO and a County Building Permit will not be required.

In addition to issuing the 2018 North Carolina Residential Code, NCDOI has issued a Guidance Document to all North Carolina County Inspection Departments providing very direct and clear answers to the questions the HRLA submitted to NCDOI in April 2018. That document, dated June 25, 2018 addresses the permit exemptions, and other issues, including:

·        No County permit required for repairs on piers meeting R327 limitations

·        No County permit required for repairs on piers when cost of work is less than $15,000.00 and does not involve repair to the load bearing structural components. Railings and decking are not classified as a structural component.

·        NC Residential Code does not require handrails or guardrails on piers meeting R327 limitations.

Please Note: 
While these updated building codes may not require handrails or guardrails on piers, Cube Hydro's safety standards and Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) still mandate them. All property owners are required to have handrails on both the stationary sections of their piers and on the ramp going down to the floater. Click here to view complete SMP specifications and Permit Requirements on the Cube Hydro Carolinas website:  http://cubecarolinas.com/shoreline-management/

·        Replacement of ramp hinge assembly hardware and bolts does not constitute a “repair of load bearing structure” and does not require a County permit unless cost exceeds $15,000.00 

·        Handicap Accessibility requirements of the NC Building Code do not apply to any private waterway structure associated with one or two-family dwellings.

HRLA Officers met with Davidson County Officials in August to review these changes. Davidson Officials acknowledged the Code changes make a significant change in their approach to Pier Permits and inspections and agree that when pier construction or repair is in accordance with the Residential Code exemptions and NCDOI Guidelines, the County will not require a building Permit or conduct inspections. The lakeside property owner or contractor will fill out an “Exemption Form”, available at county inspection departments or the HRLA website, certify the exemptions, and leave the form with the county inspection office.

Davidson’s Code Enforcement Officer expressed a concern that he believes some people will want a County Building Permit and Inspection of their pier/dock.  If that’s your case, you can retain the services of a licensed engineer or architect, have them to prepare a set of signed design documents, present these documents to the County office, pay their permit fee, and Davidson County will issue a building Permit, inspect, and issue a certificate of completion.

The HRLA asked to meet with Rowan County officials, but the county declined. The HRLA believes Rowan will operate in generally the same manner as Davidson.

HRLA Board members met with Cube Yadkin staff in mid-August to review changes to the Building Code, changes in COE procedures, and the effect of these changes to the Cube Yadkin permitting procedures put in place in January 2018.

In late August Cube Yadkin responded to the HRLA concerns in a very positive manner. Cube Yadkin rescinded the January 2018 Permit Requirement table (three columns) and posted a revised Table of Requirements for Permits (dated August 28, 2018).

Cube Yadkin will no longer require a permit for repairs to your pier or boathouse as long as the repair is “like-for-like”.  This is Cube Yadkin’s term for repairs to your facility that does not modify, alter, or change the facility.   See Cube’s Permit Table at end of article or at Permit_Table

All new work within the scope of the Shoreline Management Plan will continue to require an application to Cube Yadkin and approved permit before you commence any activity.

All electrical, mechanical, or plumbing work requires a County Building Permit; and a Cube Yadkin Permit if within the Cube Yadkin area of control.

We believe the cooperative effort by the HRLA and NCDOI provides great benefit to lakefront property owners, not just at High Rock but throughout North Carolina.




R327.1 General.

Docks, piers. bulkheads and waterway structures shall be constructed in accordance with Chapter 36 of the North Carolina Building Code.

Exception: Structures complying with the following are not required to meet the provisions of Chapter 36 of the North Carolina Building Code or this code.

1.              Fixed piers associated with a one- or two- family dwelling meeting all of the following:

1.1.     A maximum of four boat slips for a single owner of a one- or two- family dwelling or two adjacent, riparian owners.          

1.2.     A maximum height of 15 feet measured from deck to mud line at any location along the pier.

1.3.     A maximum normal pool depth of 13 feet on lakes and ponds and a maximum mean low water depth of 7 feet in other locations.

1.4.     A maximum walkway width of 6 feet

1.5.     A maximum pile spacing of 8 feet in both directions.

1.6.     A maximum of 576 sq. ft. for non-walkway areas

1.7.     A maximum boat slip length of 40 feet

1.8.     A maximum roofed area of 576 sq. ft. with an additional maximum 2-foot overhang.

1.9.     Constructed with no enclosed or multilevel structures.

1.10. Supports a boatlift with a maximum design capacity no greater than 16,000 pounds.


2.              Floating docks associated with a one- or two- family dwelling meeting all of the following:

2.1.     A maximum of four boat slips for a single owner of a one- or two- family dwelling or two adjacent, riparian owners

2.2.     A maximum normal pool depth of 20 feet for docks with guide piles on lakes and ponds and a maximum mean low water of 10 feet for docks with guide piles in other locations.

2.3.     A maximum boat slip length of 40 feet

2.4.     Finger piers, crosswalks or other floating surfaces having a minimum width of 3 feet wide to a maximum of 6 feet (1829 mm) wide, except for a single 8-foot x 16-foot section.

2.5.     When constructed with a roof the following conditions exist:

                                                  i.      Ultimate design wind speed is 115 mph or less:

                                                 ii.     Roof load is 20 psf or less:

                                               iii.      A maximum eave height of 10 feet

                                               iv.     A maximum roof slope of 4:12;

 v.     A maximum roofed area of 576 sq. ft. with an additional maximum 2-foot (610 mm) overhang:

                                      vi.     A minimum boat slip width of 12 feet

vii.      A minimum floating dock width of 4 feet along both sides of the boat slip;

                                            viii.     A maximum dead load of 12 psf

ix.      Floating structures supporting roof structures are balanced or anchored to reduce the possibility of tipping.

2.6             Constructed with no enclosed or multilevel structures.

2.7             Supports a boat lift with a maximum design capacity no greater than 16,000 pounds.


Cube Yadkin Permit

High Rock Lake News

High Rock Lake Association is a 501(c) 4 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 159, Southmont, NC 27351

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