The following basic rules governing the lake and the recreation areas are for the safety of BLHA members, guests and the facilities.
Access and Key Fobs
- Use of the beach area, and picnic grounds is limited to members of the association and their guests. Simply being a resident of Berkeley Lake does not entitle one to the use of the area. Shoreline property owners who are not BLHA members may not use or access the beach area, BLHA pavilion, and picnic grounds, nor may they use motorized or non-motorized watercraft on the lake.
- You must carry your key fob to access these facilities.
- Guests must be accompanied by the member; immediate family and/or caregivers may use the facilities with your permission and be in possession of your key fob. You are responsible for the conduct of anyone with your key fob.
- Areas secured by combination lock must be locked when you exit.
- Do not prop open gates or leave the property with any gates left open and unsecured.
- The key fobs are tied to the household it was issued to, and entry into the beach area via the fob is logged. If violations occur at the beach, the access log will be reviewed. As such, if you lose your key fob, witness a violation of rules, or find a mess at the beach when you arrive, report it to the BLHA board.
We feel privileged to offer a clean, safe beach, pavilion, and picnic grounds for BLHA members. It is the responsibility of all members to help keep our facilities safe. Please carry your fob and don’t be offended when asked to display your fob by other members. An active fob is proof of current household membership. This helps make it safe for everyone. Members should feel comfortable asking trespassers to leave. Do not open the gate for people without fobs. Always close the gate behind you.
BLHA Property Rules and Safety
- The beach, BLHA pavilion, and picnic grounds are shared spaces, meaning that they are intended for open access by BLHA members. As such, no formal or informal reservations are allowed at the beach. For reserved events, the BLHA pavilion is the appropriate venue.
- Rule of Ten. Regardless of the number of BLHA member households attending or present, no event/gathering should have more than 10 (total) non-member guests. A group larger than 10 non-member guests would require reservation of the BLHA pavilion.
- Rule of Five. Regardless of the number of BLHA member households attending or present, no event/gathering should have more than 5 non-member guest vehicles parked in the beach parking lot.
- No Reservations at the beach. The pavilion at the beach is designated as a shared space and cannot be reserved for the exclusive use of any group or gathering. This includes placement of decorations/signage, unattended chairs, coolers and other supplies to block usage for other members. Rentals are accepted for private use of the BLHA Pavilion.
- Children should always be accompanied by adults.
- No pets, dogs, cats, etc. are allowed at the beach unless approved by the BLHA Board. There are instances the Board approves a vetted member/dog to run the grounds/beach for geese control, when no members are present. Dogs at the BLHA pavilion should be leashed and picked up after.
- No walking on the dam. Trespassing on the dam area is unlawful and subject to a fine by the City of Berkeley Lake.
- No littering, illegal drug use, illegal weapons, obscene behavior, nudity on BLHA property at any time. Also, no glass containers or loud music is permitted at the beach.
- No alcohol consumption by minors will be tolerated.
- Residential use of BLHA trash receptacles is strictly prohibited.
- No camping on BLHA property, except for BLHA sanctioned events.
- Fire pits are a convenience provided for small personal fires. Please do not create large fires. Do not burn anything other than firewood. Do not leave the fire unattended, completely extinguish all fires before leaving.
- City noise ordinance in place from 10 pm to 9 am.
- No fireworks at the beach, BLHA pavilion, or picnic grounds.
- Clean up after yourself and your guests; pick up all your belongings, towels, chairs, toys, etc.
- When personal property is found on BLHA owned property (beach, pavilion, picnic grounds, adrift in the lake, etc.) that is lost or abandoned, it will be gathered and held for 30 days. If no claims are made after 30 days, it will be declared abandoned and donated. Send email to [email protected] if you are looking for lost property.
- In the case of abandoned watercraft requiring registration (kayaks, paddle boards, boats, etc.) the owner and status of registration will be verified if the property has the required BLHA numbered sticker. The owner will be contacted and given 15 days after notice to claim property and pay any outstanding fees on the registration if due.
- If the owner is not current or the item is not registered, all fees must be paid before property is returned.
- If the owner has not secured their property after 30 days, a final notice will be sent, and the property will then be subject to donation.
- If the same item is found abandoned for a second time in one year, then there will be a $50 fine for its return.
Swim Safety Rules
- Swimming is at your own risk. There is NO LIFEGUARD ON DUTY.
- Parents, watch your children at all times; it only takes 20 seconds for a child to drown.
- All children under the age of 13 and anyone who is a marginal swimmer, swimming outside the roped off swimming area, should wear a life jacket. Lake visibility is far less than in a pool, and it is suggested that you take additional safety precautions in the lake due to these differences.
- Always swim with a buddy, never swim alone.
- Avoid swimming in the areas on both sides of the roped off swimming area, as these areas are designated for boat parking.
- No swimming is permitted off the BLHA pavilion and picnic ground docks. There are submerged fish habitats as well as old fish lines and hooks in this area. It is dangerous to swim close to these docks.
- Extended breath-holding activities are dangerous and should be discouraged.
- Be aware of submerged hazards such as rocks, wooden structures and metal objects.
- Beware of and avoid (if possible) snakes or turtles that may be present in the area.
- Dial 911 for emergencies.
Kayak and Canoe Storage Rules
The rules and liability waiver for the BLHA Kayak / Canoe Storage Rack are available in the document box under Organizational Documents.
Guidelines and rules for the Berkeley Lake Organic Community Garden are available in the document box under Organizational Documents.
- Vehicles, trailers or boats may not be parked on BLHA property without BLHA board written authorization. However, a resident may choose to moor or dock their craft(s) on the lake, directly adjacent to their own private property.
- Motorized vehicles and bicycles must remain in designated parking areas and may not be ridden within the beach, BLHA pavilion, or picnic ground recreation areas at any time without the express consent of the BLHA board.
- Personal watercraft may not be left on BLHA property, unless appropriately stored in member’s rented storage rack. All watercraft used on BLHA property must be registered with the BLHA.
- All watercraft secured in rented storage areas are the personal property of the space holder and cannot be used by other members or guests.
- All boats must follow the manufacturer’s maximum occupancy requirements posted on the watercraft.
- All boats should have a life vest on board for each passenger.
- No boats may be left docked at the BLHA pavilion and picnic grounds overnight with out prior, specific approval from the BLHA Board.
- No homeowner may permanently moor an object in Lake Berkeley more than 25 feet from the shoreline. Any item that is temporarily moored in the lake must be moved to the shore by sunset to avoid navigational hazards which could cause injury or damage. The BLHA board can designate areas to permanently locate mooring buoys to ensure the protection of underwater reefs (fish habitat).
- Property owners making repairs (impacting shoreline) must contact the BLHA board in writing to inform of changes being planned. Shoreline cannot be extended into the lake. The property line demarcation point between BLHA and the shoreline property owner is considered as the high watermark, at full pool elevation 976.6 feet. (Amended 2014)
- Non-encapsulated foam used for flotation is eliminated from the lake. The requirement is for all floating docks/walkways to replace this type of product with encapsulated foam. The non-encapsulated foam is “environmentally unfriendly” as it breaks down and is considered unsafe for the ecosystem. (Adopted 2008)
- Do not dump living or dead non-native fish or aquatic pets into the lake.
- Shoreline property owners may not blow leaves into the lake. Naturally occurring leaves carried by the wind into the lake are manageable to the ecosystem, but can still create issues. The large quantity of leaves blown by lawn care from shoreline property yards into the lake can create substantial problems and are not allowed.
- Evasive water plants are not allowed to be placed in the lake. Any plants growing in the water along the shoreline are subject to be removed unless the BLHA board has granted an exception. (Adopted 2008)
- Homeowners are encouraged not to use non-aquatic approved chemical along the shoreline to limit the impact to the ecosystem. (Adopted 2008)
- Firearms are not permitted on BLHA facilities (lake/beach/picnic grounds/pavilion). Firearms may be securely locked in vehicles located in the beach and chapel parking areas.
Upon violation of these rules, the following steps will be taken:
- 1st Occurrence – written, or verbal notice sent to the member and recorded in BLHA meeting minutes. Written notice to be kept on file with the Board of Directors. This notice will be a review and conclusion of the findings and will never expire. Depending on the severity of the findings, no loss of beach privileges. Should the Board decide the violation severe, it may impose loss of beach privileges.
- 2nd Occurrence – written notice sent to the member and recorded in BLHA meeting minutes. Member attendance at the next monthly meeting may be requested. BLHA privileges may be restricted. Written notice that your beach access will be suspended for not less than 30 days. This notice will be kept in a file and not expire. BLHA key fobs will be deactivated. The Board of Directors will review and reserves the right to further actions.
- 3rd Occurrence – written notice sent to the member and recorded in BLHA meeting minutes. Member attendance at the next monthly meeting will be required. BLHA privileges may be restricted or revoked. Written notice that your beach access will be suspended for not less than one year. This notice will be kept on file and not expire. BLHA key fobs will be deactivated. The Board of Directors will review and reserves the right to further actions.