Originally Posted by jamisonsbrodie
The Tournament lakes around here are all 1900-2100, which seems perfect to me. 2000 is ideal IMO. You don't want it too long, otherwise wind will affect it more. Depth depends on your needs. If it is just for slalom, than 8 feet is plenty in the middle and 5-6 feet at the turn bouys, but if you plan to stock it with fish and/or wakeboard you will need 10-11 feet. Turn-around islands are a must if you want to do it right, otherwise you will get rollers down the course. They do add a bit of work and cost, as you need to riprap them with rock. When it comes to slope, the gentler the better at the edge, whereas it can be steeper out further.
I was in the process of adding a lot to my post above after you responded, but the way I understand it, width is going to have more of an effect on how much damage wind can do with rollers than length. 2,000' is fine, but I know people with 2,000' lakes that wish they had more room to get up and running. Of course, make it too long and you are burning more gas per set. With 2,000' and 55m buoys, you have 393' on either side to get up and running. It's enough, but in a perfect world, I'd love another 100 feet or so on each side.
Unless you are doing turn-arounds at the end of the course, I still think turn islands are more trouble than they're worth. It's easier to just not do down and backs
, but rather, drop at each end. That's just me. Dropping is my preference anyway.
As for depth, if drought is possible, go deep out to the balls. We had a horrible drought here last summer, but a local ski school kept skiing because his lake was cut 12' deep out to the turn balls. If you are on a well or a spring, you can afford to go shallower. But with shallower water comes the ability for sunlight to reach the bottom, making vegetation more likely. Lots of trade offs there.