How to Create a Lakeside Beach

by Contributor

If you're lucky enough to own a lake or lakeside property, you may dream of having your very own beach away from the beach. But there may be more involved in creating a beach than you think. You should also be careful that you don't upset the balance of nature at your little slice of heaven. Read on to find out if a lakeside beach is a possibility for you.

Look into what kind of lake bottom you have, an important first step. If your lake has a sandy bottom, you're in luck. But if your lake has a mucky bottom, it may be more difficult to add sand to your beach haven and make it last without losing your investment to the wave action of the lake.

Find out what permits are needed, if any, from local zoning boards or State Department of Natural Resources. They may have restrictions about altering natural shorelines of lakes within their jurisdiction. For example, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources does not allow any plant barrier or liner below the newly applied sand.

Find out if your state has any restrictions on removing vegetation in the area. Once you put down your blanket of sand, plants and weeds will invariably start to spring up and try to reclaim the area. Your state may not allow weeding or application of chemicals to get rid of unwanted vegetation.

Use the largest grain of sand that you can find for your beach to prevent fine sand from sinking to the bottom or migrating somewhere else, like your neighbor's property.

Consider installing a floating dock for your lake if your beach dreams look like they're not going to come true. You can set up your dock with all the comforts of your favorite escape.

Tip

  • You can create a beach without the need for a nearby body of water. Sunset (see Resources below) describes how you can build a beach area in your backyard by painting an ocean backdrop on a picket fence, piling up decomposing granite to build dunes, planting beach grasses and then covering the area with 3 inches of sand. Complete the beachy feel by adding driftwood and shells from your last real beach trip.