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Posted by: Kenneth Paul

CenLa Coast Guard Flotilla 081-04-06. Alexandria / Pineville..

Beginning in 2016 the flotilla acquired the use of a concrete structure located in Pineville, LA on Lake Buhlow. The facility is the property of the State of Louisiana and under an agreement, between the City of Pineville and the State of LA. The City of Pineville has allowed the 04-06 use of the facility which is located on the waterfront and consist of a meeting room, three restrooms, observation deck on roof, dock, ramp, piers, and is fully secured.

Lake Buhlow is a popular destination for various boating, racing, fishing and recreational activities. Built in 1956, it covers an area of 282 acres. Lake Buhlow is bounded on the south by U.S. Highway 165, and the Red River to the north. At the west end of the lake is the historic Civil War-vintage Fort Buhlow, and the Pineville Municipal Airport on the east side.

The lake was originally a pasture which served as part of a 1920 Central Louisiana State Hospital facility. Cattle were marched daily, from the pasture, by the patients through an underground tunnel to the hilltop historic dairy barn of Central Louisiana State Hospital. The enormous hilltop barn, was built in 1923, and added to the National Register of Historic Places on May 15, 1986.

It is also the site of speed boat racing since the 1960s, and is known for its flat, fast race course due to the shallow lake being sheltered from winds by surrounding hills. The race course is the best in the United Statesfor Alky powered outboards.

Lake Buhlow is often called "The Fastest Lake in the USA" and is listed in the Guiness Book of World Records. Events have included the Deep South Racing Association Drag Boat Racing Series and races sponsored by the National Boat Racing Association.

Pineville Municipal Airport, located at 200 Lake Buhlow Road, adjoins Lake Buhlow on the east end of the lake. The airport is operated by the City of Pineville and also houses the Civil Air Patrol. The airport features the only charted water runway in centralLouisiana. Both the paved runway 18/36 and the water runway extend 3,000 feet in length. Flightline Air Services provides air support services such as fuel, maintenance, hangar space, tie-down, flight training, aircraft rental, and pilot supplies. The airport is also home to a local chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association.

With assistance from the City of Pineville and local businesses, Flotilla 081-04-06 renovated the facility, (windows, doors, security bars, etc). Many other plans are in development for future activities as the City of Pineville continues to further develop the recreation site. 

The City of Pineville is fully supportive in promoting the "Boating Safety" program and supports the USCG AUX in its commitment to boating safety classes for youth and adults at the facility.

Besides classes for the public, there are currently classes each summer for Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Sea Scouts. Any organization is welcome to contact us about having a water safety class for their youth group.

Member meetings are held on the 3rd, third, Monday of each month. With the exception of offsets due to holidays, events, etc.

Many upcoming activites, training classes, etc, are being scheduled on Lake Buhlow for 2024.

The 04-06 welcomes all visitors to join us, you can drive in or fly in.
Any inquiries can be made to


ATTENTION BOATERS !!! Does your boat meet all of the US Coast Guard and Louisiana safety requirements.? Have you had, and possess, the required boat operators certification.? Find out!! The Vessel Safety Check gives you a risk-free way to check that you meet the legal minimum requirements and can help avoid a citation while on the water. The Flotilla 04-06 Vessel Examiners will make appointments with you to inspect your boat at your storage location or trailered prior to launch. Requirements for the Exam: •Have your boat equipped with all of its safety equipment •Be present for the exam. •Have your boat registration available