John Guilmette Access Area improvements underway
Posted on 04/30/2015
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Media Contact: Mike Wichrowski, 802-917-1347

John Guilmette Access Area improvements underway

SOUTH HERO, Vt. - The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is reminding anglers and recreational boaters that the John Guilmette Access Area on Lake Champlain in South Hero remains under construction and that the access area is not yet open for public use. Vermont Fish & Wildlife recently acquired the access area as part of its ongoing program to provide public access to public waters.

“The reconstruction of the John Guilmette Access Area will improve boat launching, offer more organized access and parking, and provide a public facility that meets environmental and ADA standards so that all recreationalists will be able to enjoy this area of Lake Champlain,” said Mike Wichrowski, facility and lands administrator with Vermont Fish & Wildlife.

“While we expect the construction phase to be complete in late-May, the access likely won’t be open until mid-summer,” said Wichrowski. “In order to protect water quality we need the storm water infrastructure installed at the site to work properly. In particular, we need to allow for a good grass turf to establish in the parking area. If used too soon, the turf could become damaged, creating nutrient and sediment runoff and resulting in future closures to repair the area.”

When finished, the improved access area will feature new ramp and dock structures, and will include a number of green infrastructure components including a pervious grass parking lot, grass-lined drainage swales and rock drains.

Additionally, new landscaping will occur. Trees will be replanted and “no-mow” sections will be established allowing the entire project to meet the state’s new shoreline protection standards.

“The ultimate goal of the project is to make the access area safer and more user-friendly, while protecting water quality,” said Wichrowski. “Taking into consideration the amount of use the access area sees each year, the needs of anglers and boaters, and the protection of the lakeshore and abutting wetlands, it was critical for us to redevelop this area for sustainable future use.”

Vermont Fish & Wildlife will announce when the access area is ready to open for anglers and boaters to enjoy.

“We’d like to thank anglers and boaters for funding the Fish and Wildlife Department’s access area program, and for their continued patience during the reconstruction process,” said Wichrowski. “We would also like to recognize the various neighbors, local businesses, town officials and partnering agencies for their collaboration on the project, one which will benefit the access area’s many users for years to come.”

To view a complete list of all Vermont fishing access areas, including maps and additional information, visit

To learn more about fishing in Vermont or to purchase a Vermont fishing license, visit