While there is a No Wake Zone established along King’s Creek, many larger boats are not completely complying, and this is the cause of substantial erosion to property and banks along that stretch of waterway. This is mainly due to the fact that No Wake Zone signs have deteriorated and are lost.
While former Supervisor Granville Hogg has brought this to the attention of the county, no movement to replace the signs has been undertaken.
According to Hogg, landowners have made attempts to bring this matter to the attention of VMRC, the agency that has granted a license to those desiring to increase boat traffic, however, erosion due to large wakes does not appear to have been evaluated. It appears either the additional boat traffic or the boat wakes have modified the ecosystem to a point where the area of the most severe erosion is no longer conducive to the propagation of natural marsh grass buffers.
Hogg tells the Mirror that landowners have experienced a significant bank erosion problem in the last two years. The trees are dying and falling into the creek due to the erosion which is being caused by the boat wakes. Hogg has requested that the county have the NO WAKE SIGNS re-installed at the original locations and consider marking the easterly boundary of the No Wake Zone also. The additional boat traffic in the winter and early spring has also had a detrimental effect on the natural shoreline grasses.
The “NO WAKE” zone on King’s Creek was approved by the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) in August of 1984 in accordance of Virginia Code 29.1-744. The Northampton County Board of Supervisors requested the establishment of this “NO WAKE” zone in May of 1984. Keith Bull was the county administrator that signed the approved application. Cherry Stone campground was listed as the responsible party for the placement and maintenance of the regulatory signs. The individual listed representing Cherrystone Campground was C.C. Ballard, phone number 331-3063. There has been no changes listed in this file changing the responsibility for maintenance of the signs from Cherrystone Campground. The regulatory signs were to be placed on existing channel markers in King’s Creek in accordance with Virginia Administrative Code 4 VAC 15-370-50.
An extension of the established King’s Creek “NO WAKE” zone was approved by DGIF in June of 2004 at the request of Northampton County BOS, Larry Metzler, County Administrator. This change extended the “NO WAKE” zone to provide no wake protection in the portion of King’s Creek between Buoy #7 to Buoy # 15.
The locations of the markers was last recorded in 2012 :
1. N 37* 17.0 W 76* 1.0 placed on Marker# 7 ( This GPS coordinate does looks incomplete)
2. N 37* 10.9320’ W 76* 70.40’ placed on Marker#8
3. N 37* 16.9240’ W76* 50.40’ placed on Marker#10
4. N36* 16.8220’ W76* 50.20’ placed on Marker#15
Enforcement of DGIF approved “NO WAKE” zones:
In accordance with Virginia Code 29.1-202 all sheriffs, police officers and other peace officers of the Commonwealth are vested with the same authority as a Conservation Police Officer and can enforce this and similar zones.