Wednesday May 16 2012
Nevada Irrigation District takes over Rollins operation
By: Martha Garcia, Colfax Record Editor
Resort prepares for busy summer season
Warm weather and the upcoming Memorial Day holiday will draw thousands of boaters, fishermen and campers to Rollins Reservoir. This year, Long Ravine Campground will also see Nevada Irrigation District employees in charge. On April 27, NID took over recreational operations at Long Ravine ? located about 3.5 miles outside of Colfax ? from longtime concessionaire Russ Englestad. Earlier during the week, NID?s board of directors had approved an asset purchase and lease termination agreement with Englestad, who developed many of the campground?s facilities. The board also approved an interim budget of $247,500 to operate Long Ravine from May 1 through December. Running the campground isn?t new to NID. On the Nevada County side of Rollins there are four campgrounds: Scotts Flat and Orchard Springs, which NID already operates, and Greenhorn and Peninsula that are operated by private concessionaires under contract with the district. Cayden Caldwell, senior customer account assistant for NID, said there are usually four employees on staff at one time, and a total of 12 employees, at Long Ravine. He?s the gate supervisor, and he and his staff take reservations, do the maintenance and provide customer service. ?It?s multi-tasking ? we do it all,? Caldwell said. According to Caldwell, because of the change in operator, there are currently no boat rentals. But the boat launch is open, boat slips are rented on a long-term basis, trailer parking is available, and there are plenty of camping sites. Sites range from $29 to $39 for RV camping with full hookups, which includes power and sewer, to standard RV camping, without power or sewer hookups, at $33 to $35. Standard tent camping is $29, and lakeside tent camping is $33. Group camping rates begin at $95. Caldwell isn?t sure when the Long Ravine?s restaurant, The Outrigger, will be in operation. But work is underway to open the store ? and all other amenities ? for Memorial Day weekend. ?That?s when our fuel docks are going to up,? he said. Wood and ice will also be available at the store. Anglers will want to know the lake has been productive. ?Trout are really biting right now,? Caldwell said. Other fish in the lake are large- and small-mouth bass, rainbow trout, channel catfish and croppie, he said. There?s a limit of five fish per person; and fishing licenses, which are not sold at the store, are required. Dave Estockle, who was the concessionaire at Orchard Springs for many years and now owns Performance Marine in Colfax, said Rollins is ?a nice lake.? He agrees that the best time for boating is during the week and non-peak hours. Although he lived in Grass Valley, Caldwell said that as a teenager he spent a lot of time at Long Ravine with a friend from Colfax. He still remembers the fun he had there and is excited about the beauty and recreation offered at the lake. ?It?s a gorgeous place, with a beautiful atmosphere,? Caldwell said. ?We?re really hoping to make this a fun, friendly, family establishment ? that?s our goal.?