Winter Arrives

Established to promote the conservation of the quality of the environment of the area in the watershed of Lake Kanasatka, including the conservation of the natural resources of the land, water, marshland, woodland and open spaces, as well as the plant and animal life therein, and the protection of the water quality of Lake Kanasatka and its tributaries against pollution.

Safety on the Winter Ice

Recent winter-like weather has brought an early start to Lake Kanasatka's winter covering of ice.  Before you venture out on the lake, check the ice thickness.  'NH Lakes' provided us with this very helpful guide to safe ice thicknesses.  Remember that the ice thickness can vary from location to location so be sure to check several spots.   And just because you see other people out on the ice doesn't mean it is safe. 

Also be sure to read NH Fish and Game Department's very informative brochure on ice safety.  You can download it here.

The Latest (2017) Water Quality Report.

This report contains the findings of a water quality survey of Lake Kanasatka, Moultonborough, New Hampshire, conducted in the summer of 2017 by the University of New Hampshire Center for Freshwater Biology (CFB) in conjunction with the Lake Kanasatka Watershed Association as part of the Lakes Lay Monitoring program. The report is written with the concerned lake resident in mind and discusses 2017 and 35 years of historical water quality data. Graphic display of data is included, in addition to listings of data in appendices, to aid visual perspective. You can download the full report here.

The simplified and stand alone, three page, “Lake Kanasatka sampling highlight” document was produced for distribution among interested residents and officials. You can download the summary here.

Fishing Line recycling

Lisa Hutchinson's father made this fishing line recycling container for us. They are used all over the country. We received approval from NH DES and NH Fish and Game to install it at the Rte. 25 boat ramp. It is mounted on a pressure treated post and should be very durable. Last year we lost our male loon after it ingested discarded fishing line and hooks.  Please use this to recycle your old fishing line and keep our lake clean.

What to do if you suspect an algae bloom on Lake Kanasatka:

  • Notify board members and water quality chair (their email addresses are available on LKWA website) with the following information:
    • Location of the suspected bloom on the lake (be specific…address, landmarks, etc.)
    • Approximate size
    • Anything noteworthy – when you noticed it, how long it has been there, has it changed, what it looks like (provide photos if possible)
  • Water quality chair will assess and notify both NHDES and UNH Lakes Lay Monitoring Program
  • If NHDES or UNH are not readily available, water quality chair or designee will visit site, take photos, note size, and collect a sample in a 125ml or larger container. Sample will be kept refrigerated and delivered to NHDES or UNH same or next day
  • Water quality chair or designee will follow up with residents and members
Here are some examples of Algae Blooms found in NH lakes.

Going Fishing?

Kevin Kelly

Last summer, Lake Kanasatka's male loon was found beached, badly tangled in fishing line. Despite the heroic rescue by John Cooley of LPC, Steve Corcoran and  great medical care at Meadow Pond Animal Hospital and Avian Haven in Maine, the loon did not survive, leaving his mate to raise their young chick. Along with the mass of fishing line that entangled the loon, X-Rays showed two different fish hooks in its stomach. No one knows exactly how this tragedy occurred, but one theory is that the loon swallowed fish that were hooked, then snapped the fisherman's lines, escaping with a length of line attached.

Was this loon's death preventable? Absolutely! It is a mystery how a loon can become entangled in that amount of broken fishing line and end up with two different hooks in its stomach. Fishermen tend to fish with just one hook. Hooks are designed to corrode very quickly, so they are not the biggest problem. Lost or discarded fishing line remains a hazard to wildlife for many years.

While fishing line is quite durable, there are many reasons why it could break. I researched this topic via the Internet and found many causes of mono-filament line failure. There are simple tests to check the condition of rod, reel and line, along with suggested solutions to the problems. Ultraviolet Rays from the sun and/or extreme heat can ruin line.  Store rods and spare line out of the sun, away from bright light, avoid hot boats, car trunks, or similar storage places. Expert fishermen recommend storing your fishing gear in a cool, dark place. Think about where your fishing gear sits all summer. If you think this is extreme advice, I urge you to check the fishing blogs on the internet. They take it very seriously. Line weakens over time.  Fishing line manufacturers recommend discarding line after 2-3 years. You can find the manufacture date of your line on the spool label, right under the lb. test rating. When buying line, check the date. Beware of discounted fishing line, it might be old. Buy quality line. Replace the line in your reel every season.

Nicks, cuts, and abrasion are probably the greatest cause of line breakage.  Inspect the first few feet of your line frequently, especially after catching a fish, or recovering a snag. Use a magnifying glass or reading glasses for visual inspection if necessary, or pinch the line between your fingers and slide it through your fingers to feel for damage. If  the line feels rough, cut off approximately 10 ft. of line, check it again and retie your hook or lure. Look at your fingers after performing the pinch test. If you see a whitish residue, your line is corroding and will be weaker. Stretching. When mono-filament line is pulled taut and stretched hard, as in some snag situations, the molecular structure of the line can change, leaving the line thinner and less flexible. Under high magnification, stretched line looks like alligator skin. Hooking the lure onto an eyelet and reeling the line tight for storage is not recommended. The hook(s) can damage the eyelet and during storage, the top eyelet can make a dent in the line being forced against the eyelet, leaving a weak spot in the line. Rods come with built-in hook keepers located just in front of the handle for attaching the hook or lure for storage. Snug the line, but not so tight that it bends the rod. Snags might be the leading cause of broken fishing lines. Pulling hard on a snagged line is not recommended, for some of the reasons above.  I have found the most common snag in Kanasatka occurs when a lure or other sinking bait gets trapped between two rocks during slow retrieve. If you think about how this happens, it makes sense to back the lure out of where it is stuck, by simply circling the boat around, getting behind the area where the line extends out of the water, and lifting the lure out of the crevice. This is simple from a boat, but a little more time consuming from land. One would have to paddle a small boat out to the area. I have done it often. It is not convenient, but it is the right thing to do. 

Inspecting a rod and reel are equally important.Damaged eyelets will damage the line that passes through them. Slide a cotton Q-Tip in and out of each eyelet. If the cotton catches on anything, the eyelet is damaged and will cause damage to the line. Reeling the lure, weight or hook up tight, to the end eyelet for storage could also damage the eyelet.  Inspect areas of the reel which come in contact with the line, specifically the spool, bale and line roller on a spinning reel. Any nicks in the metal will damage the line. Finally, proper disposal of unwanted fishing line is crucial. Line left on a dock or inside a boat can easily blow into the water.  Together, we can make a difference.

NH Fish Consumption Guidelines

from the Department of Environmental Services.  Going Fishing?   Are you concerned about the mercury level in the lake's fish? How much fish is safe to eat?   Download a Fact Sheet on the subject here.

People's Forest: The Story Of The White Mountain National Forest

There was a screening of “The People’s Forest” in celebration of 100 years of the White Mountain National Forest at The Museum of the White Mountains a week or so ago. It was a fascinating look at the history of the forest using a lot of primary source information. It was exceptionally well done. It will be aired on NH PBS next week. See dates/times in the link here:

In addition, the related exhibit at the museum in Plymouth is also very worthwhile.

This is of interest to our community since we live in the foothills of the Whites and  it highlights the real danger of indiscriminate tree cutting on water quality in streams and lakes as well as the impact on wildlife.

Remembering Deer Hill Camp for Boys

The roots of Deer Hill Camp for Boys grew out of an older camp on Moultonboro Neck run by Ted Hilton's mother Mary Rose Hilton.  That was in 1948.  In 1949 Ted purchased a farm on Red Hill Road and brought his camp to the shores of Lake Kanasatka. Over the next five decades Deer Hill Camp for Boys and later Deer Hill Camp was a important point of activity on our lake.  Visit the newest corner of our Gallery which pays tribute to Director Ted Hilton and his camp for boys.  You will find photos, memories, yearbooks and other memorabilia.

Fish Lead Free

New Hampshire State Law prohibits the use of lead jigs less than one inch in length and sinkers weighing one ounce or less.

Effective June 2016 the sale and freshwater use of lead fishing sinkers and jigs weighing one ounce or less will be banned in New Hampshire. NH LAKES, along with a coalition of groups including The Loon Preservation Committee, help pass this important safeguard to protect our loons and aquatic wildlife.

Why Fish Lead Free?

Fishing lead free is better for our lakes and our wildlife. Ingested lead fishing tackle is the leading cause of death for adult Common Loons, but also affects many other species of wildlife in New Hampshire.

Angler’s Guide to Lead-Free Fishing

Non-toxic tackle comes in many metal choices and modern metal alloys offer the angler a number of advantages:
▪ They are environmentally safe
▪ They have more sound producing qualities to call in those fish and up your catch
▪ Tungsten, is more dense and hard than lead, and allows the angler to “feel” the bait more effectively which in turns helps the angler feel the bite
▪ Any zinc-containing fishing tackle is not recommended because it is also toxic to wildlife

For information on where to buy lead free fishing tackle and where to dispose of lead tackle in New Hampshire, visit

About Fish Lead-Free

Fish Lead-Free is a regional initiative to help anglers switch to lead-free tackle. To find out laws, where to buy lead-free tackle, and where to dispose of tackle in your region, visit

Organic Material Discharge into Lake Kanasatka

Many people believe that dumping natural materials into the lake is acceptable.  After all, it's all "natural" stuff", right?  Well, not so fast.  It is actually never OK to discharge or dump leaves, grass, brush, fireplace ashes, or similar waste into the lake.

Here is an recent message from Andy Chapman, Biomonitoring Program, NH Department of Environmental Services (DES). This agency is charged with creation and enforcement of rules on protection of NH lakes, streams and wetlands. Andy says:
"There is language in both the law and water quality standards to address this matter, at RSA 485-A-08 and 12, and Env-Wq 1703.08.  Blowing leaves and clippings into the lake adds nutrients, phosphorous and nitrogen can accelerate eutrophication (lake aging).  This leads to increased algal blooms, cyanobacteria, decreased lake clarity and dissolved oxygen, impacting aquatic life." 

Go here for further information on how organic waste may affect our lake.

The advisory, of course, also applies to landscapers and lawn companies that may assist in keeping our properties clean. Please inform your yard service of the rules so they can help in our efforts.

Since the mission of LKWA is to protect the quality of the land, water, marshland, woodland and open spaces of our Watershed, it's critical that everyone pitch in to preserve our priceless natural resource. Please do your part by following this guidance.  

Are you a member of the LKWA?

We would welcome your continued membership in our organization to insure our future success.  Click here to renew or add your membership to our organization for the amount of $25 and send your contact information details to the Lake Kanasatka Watershed Association.  If you have any questions please email us at

As you know our mission is preserving and protecting our cherished lake.  Our Lake Kanasatka water sampling program, in concert with the University of New Hampshire, monitors the health of our lake.  This is our largest expense.  We also host our July business meeting at the loon center and have our annual social potluck luncheon/meeting in August.  Annually we have contributed to three local conservation organizations, the Loon Center, the Lake Region Conservation Trust and the NH Lake Association.  We help fund the Kanasatka loon nesting platform effort and were disappointed this year with the loss of our two chicks.  All of our efforts are enhanced and documented via our website and facebook page. We as an organization would like to continue all of these efforts and can with your continued support.

We would welcome the continuation of your support towards supporting our mutual goal, the preservation of our lake.

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