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Shenipsit Lake Reservoir Recreation Program

The Shenipsit Lake Reservoir Recreation Program is now open for the 2021 season.

Recreation is allowed under a permit granted to Connecticut Water from the Connecticut Department of Public Health which provides for approved recreational opportunities with measures to protect the public drinking water source. Shenipsit Lake Reservoir is a public drinking water supply and there are precautions in place to ensure the continuous protection and quality of the water supply source.

The 2021 program includes:

  • Fishing from designated shoreline areas
  • Fishing from boats registered and stored at the boat storage area
  • Fishing from registered boats of property owners along the shoreline of Lake Shenipsit Reservoir
  • Hiking on trails around the reservoir

 View the program brochure and trails map here.


Permit Conditions

Please comply by all permit conditions to protect the safety of the Shenipsit Lake Reservoir Water Supply

1. The following activities are strictly prohibited:

  • Swimming in the reservoir or any tributaries
  • Wading in the reservoir or any tributaries
  • Littering
  • Smoking
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Fishing in restricted areas (including buoyed areas around CTWC aerators and intake channel to spillway and treatment plant).
  • Hunting or trapping
  • Pets not leashed on dry land
  • Motors (motor bikes, snowmobiles, motorized vehicles or vessels of any type except boats propelled by electric motors, etc.)
  • Fires
  • Camping
  • Removal of vegetation, animals, or minerals
  • Vendors
  • Carrying or discharge of firearms or dangerous weapons
  • Bicycles
  • Horses
  • Activities of any type, including fishing, on the ice of a frozen reservoir or tributaries
  • Disposal or discharge of wastes or other substances into a reservoir or tributary
  • Cleaning of fish within 250 feet of any waterbody


2. All persons using CWC land shall:

  • obey all orders and directions of the CWC staff and security
  • remain only in the permitted areas/marked trails within any legal season of the activity and park in designated areas only
  • prior to participating have all required licenses, permits, and any prerequisite training


3. All body wastes must be disposed of in sanitary facilities.


2021 Boat Storage

Online registration for boat storage will take place beginning Saturday, March 27th at noon on a first-come, first-serve basis. 30 boat slots will be made available for residents of the communities surrounding the lake: Ellington, Tolland and Vernon. 12 additional slots are available for individuals living in or beyond those towns.

Click here to complete the 2021 Boat Storage Application

Applications will be processed on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Anyone wishing to register for boat storage will need to provide:

  1. Driver’s license number
  2. Car/truck license plate number
  3. If your boat has a motor (only electric motors are allowed), you will also need to provide your Safe Boating Certificate number. For more information on safe Safe Boating Certificates, please visit:

If your boat is registered by the State of Connecticut, Department of Motor Vehicles (vessel registration) we request that you please include information about your boat (make, model, registration expiration date, etc.) on the registration form. While this information is not required to complete the registration process, this information will need to be collected prior to launching your boat.


Boat Slot Assignments

For those who received an email confirmation that they have received a 2021 boat slot, please schedule a time to deliver your boat to the launch area using the online calendar:

Calendar appointments for delivering the boats during the quarantine period will be available in 20-minute intervals for up to two boat parties. Additional quarantine drop off hours may become available so please check the calendar for updates.

Boats will be accepted at the boat launch area to quarantine on the following days/times:

  • Friday, 4/2 from 1:00 PM – 7:30 PM
  • Saturday, 4/3 from 8:00 AM – 7:30 PM
  • Sunday 4/4 CLOSED
  • Monday 4/5 through Friday 4/9 from 4:30 PM – 7:30 PM


Waiting List

For those who did not receive a boat slot, your name has been added to the waiting list. Boaters who have been assigned a boat slot are required to use their boat two times per month to guarantee continued use. If a boat is not used twice in a month, the slot will become available to the next boater on the Waiting List. There is nothing further you need to do. You will be contacted if a boat slot becomes available.


Launching Your Boat

Boat launch reservations will be required in 2021. Boat launch reservations are intended to stagger activity at the boat launch area to keep you and the Lake Monitors safe in light of COVID-19.

Similar to the boat quarantine calendar, the boat launch calendar will be available in 20-minute intervals for up to two boat parties. You do not have to indicate how long you plan to be on the water on any given day, just when you want to access the boat storage area to take the boat out.

Once you have delivered your boat and have been assigned a slot, and after your boat has met the 72-hour quarantine requirement, the next steps is to schedule your desired time to launch your boat using the online calendar:




2021 Shoreline Boat Owner Sticker Request

Shoreline property owners abutting Shenipsit Lake Reservoir are eligible to fish from their own boat as long as it complies with recreation program requirements in the DPH permit that are designed to protect water quality. A valid recreation program boat sticker is also required. Requirements have been mailed via U.S. Mail to eligible property owners.

Please click here to complete the 2021 Boat Sticker Request form.

Once the form is completed, you will receive your boat sticker(s) in the mail. Please fill out a request form for each boat you are requesting to access the reservoir. If you have any questions, please email