Hey All, I just stumbled upon your forum and trying to soak in as much as I can.
I've got 1/3 to 1/2 half acre pond that doesn't stay full in the summer. Long and short, I hired a contractor to rebuild it to 1-1.5 acres. It's a deep valley behind the dam and what appears to be a 1-2 acres of tree clearing. 10k yards are estimated for the new dam. We are figuring 20-25 feet deep.
1 month of work including stacking trees I am keeping, finish grading and an overflow drain. What are your thoughts on cost?
Thanks. I'll get some pictures up of what it looks like today.
Well, its been nearly over a month since construction began. We are just a couple days away from complete. I'm in charge of erosion control so seed and straw will be down today or tomorrow. I am guesstimating it will be between 1- 1.1 acres of surface water.
The corner on the dam/ cabin side is over 20ft deep. My intent is to stock with largemouth, blue gill and feeder fish only, but thinking about smallies?
I will add dock/ deck as well and still thinking about placement.
Ouch, pictures won't load. It says they are downloading but they are coming up blank. Sorry, we'll have to wait till the moderators can fix the glitch in the forum. Would love to see your pictures and try to answer your question...
Another question for you experts. I am fighting washout from runoff due to the rain we have been getting. My bench soil (opposite the dam) has a lot of sand it in so I'm getting washout due to the whole drainage area being a bowel to begin with.
Well, unfortunately, mother nature decided to skip my 16 acres with any rainfall this summer. As of today, I am looking at a very, very expensive 1 acre hole in the ground with a nice dry dock. I had about 5 feet of water in the bottom in June and maybe 18" now. Not to mention any rain we have gotten, just resulted in backfilling the bottom in silt. I've got 7-10 acres of run-off area but that means nothing without rain.
I'd share pictures, but that doesn't seem to work either.
Two questions for you experts.
1. Is it possible the dry sides acted like a sponge because they didn't get fully saturated, therefore absorbing what little water I have? 2. I am seriously considering a well, but drilling locations are very limited.
With a fresh bottom, (minus silt, vegetation, leaves) this is the time to add a polymer sealant like soil floc. That is, if you are concerned that your bottom isn't holding water or your sides are not sealed properly. Even if you wanted to have faith that your pond has very little leaks, you will hopefully never have this chance again. You have 18" of water, is it enough to put a small flat bottom boat in and have someone pull you back and forth with ropes or propel yourself with a pole or oars? I would consider taking this chance to add a little 'insurance' that any seams in the bottom may have opened or the sides aren't sealed and consider a treatment of soil floc.
Then, when the rain comes (it has to since you are not in an arid zone) and snow comes it can help reseal the bottom. Downsides to this idea is cost, although you could go lighter on the application due to more ideal conditions in the bottom of your pond. The other downside is that the water is cold and the product works better when the water is warm. You could see how it goes this winter and in the spring when water temps pick up add it then (hopefully over the winter you will gain a couple more feet of water again?)
I can see how frustrating that is to look at the big hole and not see it fill up!
Well, I'm now getting quotes for drilling a well. I've read several articles and weighing the options. but it's become an eyesore and disappointment to visitors. What is really frustrating, there appears to be a spring 20-30 yards behind the overflow pipe below the dam.
I've attached two aerial pics. The first was when things still looking promising and clean (June 2020). The second is from October and you can see the vegetation and lack of water. Thankfully most of the vegetation died with the first hard frost. I realize that that at 5-10pgm this would take long time to fill, however, I am also hoping to curb or slow the silted erosion from hard rains.
I second the vote for Soil Flock. I also am curious about the spring behind the dam, was it always there, or did it show up wen the water started filling the pond?
If the bottom of the pond isn't sealed, then the 10 GPM will might not do you any good, like trying to fill a bathtub full of water with the drain plug removed.......
My personal pond is a watertable pond, dug in sandy soil, so the bottom is not sealed. Right now it's about 6.5' low, the lowest it's been since it was renovated in 2008/2009. My current well produces 25 gpm, and I tested it over a week's time a few years ago to see if it would be enough to keep the pond full, and it wasn't. As the pond level rose, so did the amount of water leaking out through the ground - I stopped the test when I was leaking 18 gpm, and the pond was still a few feet below full pool.
I would approach it using a combination of bentonite and soil floc. Spread the bentonite out and then follow behind it with the Soil Floc. Adding plenty of both. Or drain the pond locate some clay, spread it across the ponds bottom and sides, pack it in and refill. It wont be cheap either way but if you don't take care of it now it will be a problem for the life of the pond.
Do not judge me by the politicians in my City, State or Federal Government.
I had my local water & soil conservation team out here on Thursday of last week. The engineer asked where is all the water went. I didn't take kindly to the humor. After some soil evaluation the recommendation was line the pond with clay. We did some math and estimated 1800-2000 yards of clay needed. Trying to find that much and have it hauled in...any guesses on cost? My guess is $20k and thats just getting on-site. No operator or machines moving and packing in.
We inspected the area below the dam, and found that it was wet, but hard to know if the pond is actually leaking or just spring water. I can see the orange stain of iron on the leaves but nothing like that in the pond itself.
From what I read, soil floc requires the pond to have a moderate amount of water for application. I only have about 25% bottom coverage up to 2.5 feet deep.
Bentonite will required a dry pond and the material to be tilled in. Unfortunately now is not the time of year for that. To add insult to injury, my excavator refuses to return my phones and text messages.
So...at this point my only really choice is to wait for winter and spring rains and see how far it comes up.
But...I feel your pain. I had a 2-1/2 acre pond completed in July, 2016, and it did not fill due to drought until Fall of 2018. Harrumph. It was about 1/2 full in June, 2017, but it took another 15'ish months to totally fill.
It was simply a lack of rain/drought. When we did get some rain in that dry period the ground would soak up the moisture so fast that nothing was left for runoff to fill the pond. But...the good news is that when the rains finally came it filled up just fine.