Here’s an interesting concept, Mussels hibernate.

Well they don’t actually hibernate. They go into a state of dormancy. Like most water creatures, mussels are not active in the winter. They burrow deeper into the sandy bottom of lake and stream beds. They also do not eat. So that means they don’t need a large amount of water. (500cfs) This is fact and based on science. Winter would be a good time for USFWS, FERC, NIPSCO and SFLECC to come to the table and agree to back off the water effluence from the Oakdale Dam. It would give Lake Freeman time to heal and not harm any endangered mussels. A win win. Everyone is looking for a better solution and this one makes sense and is biologically driven.

Mussel Hibernation
Mussels burrow deeper in the winter and don't eat.
Dead Mussel
Here is our FAIL if the week. Experts estimate Lake Freeman has lost over 33,000 mussels due to the mandated USFWS draw down of Lake Freeman to save mussels. Wait,what? Yes you read it correctly.
Sand Tooning
The US Fish and Wildlife Service mandated a minimum 500cfs release from the Oakdale Dam during low flow to hydrate endangered mussels down river.

Water levels have dropped by over 81”! That’s almost seven feet! More water is going out of Lake Freeman than coming in. Conditions are very dangerous. Stumps, dock steel, boulders all are now posing hazards. Be very careful while boating. Idle speeds are recommended. SFLECC continues to fight for “Run of River” standards for Lake Freeman.There was an appeals court hearing on October 5th to determine next actions. Could take months for their opinion. Please contact our state representatives and ask them to help change the current policy. We need a scientific, mutually beneficial program. Draining and killing one ecosystem to attempt to help another is NOT prudent.

Just click on their name and send them a message — 

Senator Todd Young

Senator Mike Braun

U.S. Congressman, 4th district Jim Baird

In 2014, the US Fish and Wildlife Service issued a mandate to maintain a minimum 500 CFS discharge from the Oakdale Dam. This is an attempt (Not based on science) to hydrate endangered mussels down river from the Oakdale on the lower Tippecanoe River. To be clear, we are all in favor of conservation and protecting our lakes. The mandate was issued to keep a subjective minimum flow of water to the lower Tippy. A legal fight has been underway ever since. These mussels have thrived for millions of years, it is testimony to the incredible water conditions of the Twin Lakes and Tippycanoe River. Lake Freeman should not be the watering can for the lower Tippy. Low lake levels on Lake Freeman present dangerous safety hazards. So please keep to the main channel, be extra careful when enjoying watersports and watch out for submerged objects. Let’s pray for more rain.

In the mean time, here’s a link to the Indiana USFWS overview.

Sheepnose-Mussel
A Sheepnose Mussel found in Lake Freeman and the Tippecanoe River

What is your biggest concern about Lake Freeman being drained?

Poll Results

What is your biggest concern about Lake Freeman being drained?

  • The Lake wildlife dying: Freeman mussels, fish, birds etc. ( 13.56%)

  • Someone getting seriously injured or killed ( 2.82%)

  • My seawall collapsing ( 7.34%)

  • My dock collapsing ( 0.56%)

  • My home value collapsing ( 25.99%)

  • Unbridled Government power ( 9.6%)

  • The paralyzed Lake economy, our cherished businesses ( 20.34%)

  • The water draw down won’t accomplish a dang thing ( 6.78%)

  • Can't get my boat out ( 10.17%)

  • Can't find the wrench I dropped in 2015 ( 2.82%)

Welcome to Lake Freeman Life. We’re here to be the informative resource for the people who live and play around one of Indiana’s most beautiful lakes. Lake Freeman is located in Monticello, Indiana and is a unique treasure. Formed by the construction of the Oakdale Dam in 1925 it is ten miles long and enjoys fifty miles of shoreline. Boaters, fishermen, families and visitors have countless opportunities to enjoy the water and beauty. At Lake Freeman Life, we want to offer fresh and relevant information. Share LakeFreemanLife.com with your family and friends. Bookmark it for yourself. Come back often.Talk to us! We want to keep you informed with stories, news, photos, contests and conversation. We hope you find LakeFreemanLife.com useful.

What a crazy summer. Let's hope common sense prevails and we find a balanced solution for Lake Freeman.

We appreciate Senator Mike Braun and all of our elected officials efforts to help mitigate this insane water release mandate. So here we are in Mid-October, the Federal Court of Appeals just heard the SFLECC case. Let’s keep our fingers crossed. We had a great rally on October 3rd. Over 250 people showed up, there were some great signs and a lot of passionate speeches. BUT… this is far from over. News Nation just did a story featuring the man responsible — Scott Pruitt. He is a Field Supervisor for The US Fish and Wildlife Service. Watch the story. Why did he not refer to the mandated a minimum of 500 cfs of water to be released from the Oakdale Dam AT ALL TIMES? Not a word. Instead the story was framed as if the Lakes are responsible for keeping water from the lower Tippy.

Here is a fact: Lake Freeman mussel deaths now stand at over 33,000 due to USFWS draw down.

Indiana Senator Mike Braun
Senator Mike Braun speaks to an endangered species committee about the Lake Freeman situation.
Lake Freeman Facts

Sea Level Elevation: 610'