Park created ramp Paradox

Michael Pyle

Active Member
So very long story kind of short. We had to pull our houseboat to get the Gen replaced.

We had an engine compartment flood early May. Had a hard time getting it worked on thru the summer. Had to do most of the work ourselves as APEX was too busy. They were way behind and could not help with Gen so we got Bulldog to help us. Ed the new owner at Bulldog has been amazing.

So we get the new gen in and a bunch of other work done. The flood happened from a slow leak on the port drive. During a storm our power cords came loose and we lost power and the bilge pump killed the battery. We now have a 24/12 dc converter from solar system to charge bilge batteries so that can’t happen again. Also added wifi water sensors.

While the boat was out they found the bellow was ripped so we serviced both drives and replaced both bellows.

We have been coming to the Lake for thanksgiving for many years so planned to get the boat back in the water before this week. All looked good. Had some scheduling issues with transport but lots of time left. I guess the DPS is having issues and no police escorts available.

Well they put the boat in the water Monday and there is still a leak on the port drive. No way to get permit to get it back to town. Can’t work on it on the ramp. Called Wahweep and they can’t help. So the only choice was put it in the APM emergency lot at the ramp. The leak was too large to leave the boat on the lake.

Come to find out only APM Apex can work on anything there and they are busy. So now our boat that is not winterized is stuck in a lot that nobody can work on, not even Bulldog. We had it plugged in at the shop in town so no need to winterize before it went in the water. Especially since we were staying on it this week.

So I have to drive down this week and winterize it myself. Then wait for APM to help with the drive. They think maybe Jan. Or do the drive myself.

We can’t get permits to get it moved back to town for at least a couple weeks. Then we are worried that we won’t get it back in the water before the lake levels drop below ramp for houseboat launch. They think DPS will be slow to issue permits in January. Can’t risk not getting it back in for the season.

Park won’t let anyone work on anything at the ramp or APM’s lot. So we are stuck.

The park really needs to loosen some rules to help people like us out that have an issue. It’s not like this was our plan or we are setting up shop in the lot.

What’s your guys thoughts on when the lake levels will drop too low to launch at stateline?



Keeper of San Juan Secrets
Weren't they launching houseboats off the boiler plates last spring before the lake started to rise onto the new ramp? I would think that will continue as last year once the lake falls below the ramp, that they will continue to pour more ramp on one side while launching off the boiler plates on the other side.


Escalante-Class Member
The concrete plant is still in place at Stateline. Hopefully it’ll resume operations as water levels drop, as Meatwagon describes above.

Sounds like DPS escort from APM to Stateline is your biggest challenge. If you can get the boat to Stateline this winter you should be able to launch. Also, once at Stateline, it can be worked on by Wahweap Marine Service Center. They have a huge yard and regularly service houseboats of all sizes.

Here’s a pic from Jan 11, 2022. Elevation was 3,535 before concrete was poured to current elevation. Large boats were utilizing the boiler plate without issue.


Escalante-Class Member
Just thinking aloud…would it be possible to install extra bilges to safely refloat long enough to make the 1 hour trip to Stateline? Have transport waiting for you there to pull out to the upper parking area.

Bulldog might be able to work with you there…??

Michael Pyle

Active Member
The boat is at Stateline. APM has an emergency lot there. We had it towed from Page to Stateline to launch it. Put it in the water and it leaked. Pulled it out and was told by park service we can not work on it at the ramp. Didn’t have return permit so only option was APM emergency lot. Where only APM can work on things.

Pretty crazy set of circumstances.

The plan is I have to drive down there and winterize it then it can be pulled back into page next Friday.



Escalante-Class Member
Did not know APM had an emergency work area at Stateline.

Seems a little flexibility and common sense from either party (NPS or APM) would produce a much better outcome for all…but alas those qualities seem to be tied up, like everything else these days, in the “supply chain.”

Happy Thanksgiving, hoping all goes well with the winterization and permits come soon. AND, hoping the ramp work continues through the winter to keep us all on the water!

Lake Bum

Well-Known Member
I'd be reaching out to the very TOP of the ladder at APM to get clearance for someone other then them to work on it there. Because of the circumstances, the emergency wasn't really necessary, but now you're stuck. Stateline will be able to launch your boat back in the lake for a long, long worries on that end.

Michael Pyle

Active Member
Went down and winterized the boat myself. Absolutely no reason we could not change the drive in rush lot. So dumb

Glad I have a plane to fly down and back in a day but still sucked to waste a day and jet fuel because of stupid park rules.

No we wait until it can be towed back into town. Get to spend a couple more grand because if this situation.

Not impressed with APM or Park service for this ridiculous rule.