Low lake levels create need for awareness
Monday, 04 March 2013 by David Tuma
The lakes in Texas were built to help the residents deal with either no rain or way too much rain in one day in this arid state where the Deep South meets the deserts of the west. Lake Belton peaked at over 600 feet of water in March of 2012 and has been going down for over a year.
The current elevation is 586 with the normal rate this time of year at 594 cubic feet. That doesn't sound like a lot of water... only eight feet down, but that is a lot of water that needs to be replaced with rain.
Lake Belton and virtually all lakes in Texas release water for residents down-stream. As of this morning the Lake was releasing water at 27 cubic feet per second.
Lake Belton has seen its highs and its lows in terms of water levels, but when it is down some interesting things can appear.
The rock pictured is near Morgan's Point Resort and, most of the time, just the top is appearing above the water line.
"We are a little bit low this time of year in terms of water level. We need to have the lake level come up some," said Lake Manager Ronnie Bruggman.
The Leon River feeds Lake Belton and that river runs through Coryell, Hamilton and Comanche counties. Those areas received some rain like the rest of the state recently but it wasn't enough for a major run off. The ground in those counties got a good soaking but it wasn't enough for a major water runoff into the Leon River. That is why the lakes in Texas were built to collect runoffs for future use instead of the water running into the Gulf of Mexico. That and help with flood control.
"It was lower than it was at one point this past winter. We have had the lake level come up some but we need it higher than what it is right now. When the lake is low there are all kinds of rocks and trees that people need to be aware of. Don't assume an area is safe when the lakes are low. You just have to be more aware when boating," said Bruggman.