Well summer is winding down and boy was it busy. This year we had folks calling and reserving sites 2 weeks in advance because we were full nearly every weekend. Having more visitors in the park is always a welcoming site. Our grounds crew have been working their tails off this summer to keep the park mowed and cleaned. They even had time to install new community grills on the east and west side recreation areas. Now there are grills located in the picnic and swimming areas. Our west side bathrooms also received some much needed attention. A local scout looking to make his eagle, gathered up a group of boys and they gave our park restrooms a new paint job inside and out! Another park improvement this summer included updating the west side rv loop #1 - #6 with brand new 50amp electrical pedestals. This was a much needed update for the rv area. Staff attended the Light on Stillwater event in August and are now gearing up to spend 3 days down at the Wild Life Expo ( Sep 22 - 24th @ the Lazy E Arena). We will be teaching folks how to tie knots and how to use them in the outdoors. So come check us out at the Wild Life Expo if you have the chance. Take care friends!
"I'll definitely be coming back next year!" That phrase was heard numerous times on Saturday ( 7/1/17) after the weigh in. The combination of great weather and great fishing added to the enjoyment of the participants. This year our staff partnered with the City of Stillwater to host the annual family fishing tournament. Traditionally the tournament has been held at Boomer Lake but this year participants had the opportunity to fish the scenic water of Lake McMurtry. There were both boating and non boating categories for the families to enter in, and to our surprise the biggest catch of the day was landed from shore, a 5.45lb carp caught by Austin Russell. We allowed each team 5 fish and the top 3 teams with the largest weight won. The biggest fish in the boating category was a 3.5lb large mouth bass caught by Joe Johnson. Our staff worked hard to design a tournament that would be enjoyable for fisherman/women of all skill levels. The tournament had several unique features incorporated into it. The weigh in was live on Facebook so families could tune in to see what was caught that day. Lake staff also included educational materials on how to properly handle fish and the importance of reducing stress on fish during weigh in. Staff had buckets for those fishing from shore to place their fish in so they could be weighed immediately after being caught. Handouts were given to boaters that detailed the importance of circulating the water in their live wells to keep fish alive longer. A total of 25 teams registered and nearly 100 people participated in this year's tournament. We had such a blast hosting it and are looking forward to next years event!
If you participated in the tournament and have any feedback or suggestions for us, please contact us at email@example.com
Memorial weekend shaped up to be great weather which helped our park attract a lot of visitors. This year the park was completely sold out of r.v., tent, and gated campsites for the holiday weekend but, that didn't deter folks from coming out and spending a day or two at the lake. The weather was very warm and not a rain cloud was seen all weekend. Visitors took to the swimming areas to cool off on Saturday because the temperatures reached 90F! Kayaks were a big hit as well, needless to say the bait shop clerks were just a little tired by the end of their shifts. All in all we had a great time visiting with our campers and park visitors, in fact that's what make our park so great! Spending time with the wonderful folks who share in the fun at Lake McMurtry. Speaking with customers about the best fishing spots, taking pictures of youngsters catching fish, or giving treats to 4-legged friends ( dogs ) is what makes Lake McMurtry the best kept secret of Oklahoma.
We often get asked, "What exactly do you all do in the winter time?"
While winter is our slower season when it comes to visitors, it definitely doesn't mean we aren't busy. We are always working on improving Lake McMurtry Natural Resource & Recreation Area because we want our visitors to enjoy their time while they are here and we want them to keep coming back!
One project our Maintenance Supervisor has been working on this winter is prescribed burning around our campsites and recreation areas. In order to have a healthy forest area, periodic fires need to occur. This keeps the forest from becoming overcrowded and keeps flammable fuel (such as downed limbs, leaves, and underbrush) from building up and becoming dangerous. Prescribed burning can:
Reduce flammable fuels - especially around campsites with fire rings
Minimize pests and insects
Improve animal habitats
Recycle nutrients back to the soil
Promote new growth of trees, wildflowers, and other plants.
Hopefully, our visitors who come each Spring and Summer will notice a difference in the burned areas over the next few years!
Leveling RV Pads
Another project we have been working on this Winter are the RV pads on the East RV campsites. We leveled all of the pads on the West Side's Loop 2 and now have begun the same process for the East. We do this is in order for our RVers to have an easier experience pulling in and setting up camp for their stay!
East RV 1
East RV 2
East RV 9
East RV 10
Some other projects have included our new website, cutting downed limbs and dead trees around the East and West picnic areas for firewood, development of our McMurtry Mudder event, and continuously striving to get the word out about Lake McMurtry!
We always hope that the projects we are working on - whether they are for an easier reservation system, beautification projects, or just picking up trash on a daily basis - are noticed and welcomed by our visitors and followers because we do it for you!
Do you have any suggestions for future projects at Lake McMurtry? Let us know in the comments!
The members of the Zoo, Exotics, and Wildlife ward at the Oklahoma State University Vet School released an American White Pelican on Sunday, February 1, 2015 near the East Recreation Area pavilion.
The event began at the Boy Scout Hut in Stillwater, OK where Patricia Baker, a member of the ZEW ward, gave a presentation on the American White Pelican. The presentation covered everything from the general biology of birds to birds that have unique qualities and ended with specific information about the pelican and its rehabilitation story. An endearing video of the pelican enjoying its first meal at the ZEW ward completed the presentation.
The pelican was in the care of the ZEW ward for just over two weeks, a time in which its caretakers rehabilitated it in order to gain weight, build muscle, and have a safe place to fly. This pelican release was the first of the ZEW ward's rescue and release program.
Click on pictures to enlarge.
Carrying the pelican down to the water
The pelican stretching its wings.
It was a little turned around at first, but eventually found its way!
And away it went!
We want to thank everyone for coming to Lake McMurtry to view the release of this beautiful animal! We hope to have more opportunities like this in the future to share with our visitors. We also want to thank the ZEW ward and Boy Scout Troop 818 for letting us be a part of this event. If you would like to keep updated on projects, events, and educational opportunities at Lake McMurtry, be sure to follow us on Facebook!