Recreational Use on Lake George

Program Overview

Statutory authority over certain vessels offering food, beverage, amusements, etc. has been in effect since 1961. Regulations requiring operational permits for parasails, seaplanes, tour boats, and new recreational uses, were promulgated in 1991. Parasails, Tour Boats and Seaplanes in operation prior to the adoption of the permit requirements were given permits as a matter of right but still must adhere to the adopted restrictions. The program’s purpose is to maintain oversight over the existing uses, allow public scrutiny of new proposals in order to protect existing recreational users and to provide for reasonable public access to the lake. Review of these applications can be extensive and time consuming due to the many potential impacts on the lake and other existing recreational uses. Contact the Commission for appropriate forms.



For information about camping at Lake George, please visit the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation or Reserve America web pages or by calling 1-800-456-CAMP, to find information about the islands on Lake George. You may also contact the NYS DEC Camping facilities directly at Long Island: 518-656-9426; Glen Island: 518-644-9696; Narrows: 518-499-1288. 

Lake George Water-Based Recreation Study Plan

The Commission’s broad mission includes the responsibility to manage and regulate boating and other water-based recreation in order to provide reasonable public access to the lake without congestion, overcrowding and safety hazards and to preserve the natural resources of the lake especially its superior water quality.

The Commission has been mindful for some time of the growing body of science devoted to the study of resource and parkland management and of the emerging planning and management frameworks for resource conservation and visitor satisfaction. In 2004, the Commission approved a work plan for a first of its kind study and planning framework to assess existing conditions on the lake. The project also included a survey of user perceptions related to the quality of their recreational experience. It was the Commission’s objective to bring the best scientific methods to bear in an open and transparent planning process to set future water-based recreation management objectives for the lake.

The two-year study plan was completed in December 2006. The plan report is available for review and download at the following link.  An additional analysis is also available at the bottom of the page.

Assessment of Recreational Use


    2015 Recreation Study Summary Report

    The purpose of this study is to provide both a snapshot in time and an analysis of current recreational boating and general use trends on Lake George over the past decade to provide a better understanding of the Lake and its use. It will also help inform and guide decision makers regarding recreational uses and public safety efforts on and around Lake George. This document is intended to be a resource for the casual reader interested in recreation on the lake, and also as a guiding document and tool for both short and long-term planning.




    2005 Recreational Use Study

    An Assessment of Recreational Use on Lake George, including Identification of Priority Issues and Locations, and a Framework for the Monitoring and Evaluation of Future Use.



Other Related Project Documents