RANKIN COUNTY, Miss. (WJTV) – Boating and fishing on Barnett Reservoir will resume on Monday after Governor Tate Reeves decided to extend the state’s shelter-in-place order, while relaxing some restrictions.
“Today, the Governor said he would allow lakes, including Barnett Reservoir, to reopen to boating and fishing on Monday morning,” said John Sigman, General Manager of the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District. “The change only includes boating and fishing and boat ramps, and does not allow the reopening of our parks and other day-use facilities. That includes sandbars.”
Social-distancing restrictions related to boating and fishing announced by the governor will be in effect on Rez. That includes maintaining at least 6-feet of space between people on boats, at boat ramps and bank fishing, and no gatherings.
Boats will be allowed to carry no more than two people, or half of the maximum occupancy rating for each watercraft. Due to shelter-in-place restrictions, no tournament fishing of any type will be allowed on Barnett Reservoir until further notice.
Sigman said Lakeshore Park, Old Trace Park, Lowhead Dam Fishing Area and Pelahatchie Shore Park will remain closed, as well as the dog parks and disc golf courses at Lakeshore and Old Trace parks. The Spillway Fishing Area will open Monday morning at 8:00 a.m.
“We are happy to announce that when the lake reopens Monday, boat traffic between the main lake and Pelahatchie Bay under the Northshore Causeway bridge will resume,” Sigman said. “Boaters will notice the new boom materials in place and new channel markers that will allow safe passage.”
Boat traffic at the bridge has been closed since Oct. 20, 2018 due to the outbreak of the invasive plant Giant Salvinia. The overlapping design of the boom allows for boat traffic while blocking the floating plant from escaping on wind or water current.