Business steady at Lake Oroville despite drought

Business steady at Lake Oroville despite drought

OROVILLE, Calif. - Exceptional drought in parts of the Northstate declared Thursday by the U.S. Drought Monitor but business is not quite affected at Lake Oroville.

It's the worst drought on record this year in California, but it turns out that's not driving away business.

"Yeah the lake is low but there's still a lot of water to have fun with," said Eric Gregerson, a visitor at Lake Oroville.

Bidwell Canyon Marina shuttle tours are still flowing and boaters keep hitting the water.

"If I'm going to come out here and boat, I do it early in the season," said boat owner, Paul Schwab. "So I figured if I'm going to visit, pay for it, better get out there and enjoy it."

Schwab calls Lake Oroville home for one week out of the year. In the last eight years, he and his family have been bringing out his 56 foot house boat and his ski boat. He's spent nearly 300 dollars a week just in gas.

"Whether it's up or down you're still paying for it," Schwab said.

Lake Oroville on Thursday was at 743 feet from the crest, all of the boat ramps were still open and regulars are seeing a decent size crowd filling up the docks.

"You know they come in Thursday night and they spend a three day weekend to enjoy themselves," said Schwab. "They go out to the middle fork or down the south fork and they are back in Sunday night."

The Chamber of Commerce for the City of Oroville said they have six fishing tournaments slated for this summer; however, if they don't see any rain before then it could have a negative impact on turnout.

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