Skip to main content

DNR to host public meeting March 14 on proposed Devoe Lake Dam removal

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources will host a public meeting Thursday, March 14, to solicit feedback on the proposed removal of the Devoe Lake Dam, located in the Rifle River Recreation Area in Ogemaw County.

The meeting will run 7 to 8 p.m. at the Rose Township Hall, 3380 Lupton Road in Lupton. DNR staff will provide an overview of the proposed project, followed by an opportunity for people to ask questions and provide comments.

As part of a departmental effort to evaluate DNR-managed infrastructure and create sustainable resources for current and future generations, it's been determined that the Devoe Lake Dam is no longer serving a useful purpose.

Historically, Gamble Creek flowed south through Devoe Lake, which connected with the Rifle River to the west. The dam was built in 1963 at the outlet on the west side. Decades later, Gamble Creek was rerouted through a diversion channel to the Rifle River downstream of the dam. These human-made structures have cut off the continuous flow of water through Devoe Lake.

The proposed removal is estimated to lower the water level of Devoe Lake by 2 to 3 feet, improving connectivity between the river and lake while causing only minor impacts on lake-based recreation. Improved connectivity between the Rifle River and Devoe Lake will benefit the fishery, allowing fish better access to multiple habitats at different life stages. Recreation impacts caused by the dam removal will be monitored and remediated as needed.

“We're hoping to hear from park users, anglers and community members about the proposed removal of the dam,” said Tricia Weisend, Rifle River Recreation Area supervisor. “While Devoe Lake's size shouldn't change significantly, we expect a boost for the fishery. The March 14 meeting will be a good opportunity to talk with the community."

Additional feedback and questions

For more information about the park or meeting, contact Tricia Weisend at 989-473-2258 or Those unable to attend the meeting are encouraged to email comments or questions to Weisend through Friday, March 29.

An accompanying photo is available below for download.