Tag Archives: Lower Colorado River Authority

Blessed rain

Moisture in the upper atmosphere over the Bay of Campeche seems to be slipping into South Central Texas, thanks to a slight westward shift in the ridge that’s made Texas so brutally hot and dry this month. Sprinkles over the rancho a few minutes ago while I was sitting reading on the patio. Alas, it is not expected to linger, nor to bring us much rain, though northwestern parts of the Hill Country, such as Mason and Richland Springs, have had more than an inch, according to the Lower Colorado River Authority. At least it could lower the daily high temperatures ten to fifteen degrees. Maybe.

Circling the drain


Lake Travis is the lowest it’s been since the morning of June 27–687.22 at this hour–and continues to fall, even with only three floodgates open. The fourth one was closed Friday and another one is expected to be closed tomorrow. Drove out to the marina today, only to find the docks still about eight feet from the shoreline. Decided not to wade out to them, although it was shallow enough, but to wait until tomorrow or Tuesday before going back out to check the sloop. In particular, I need to run the outboard. It’s been almost a month since I did that.

Catastrophe 2007

LCRA is now projecting that Lake Travis will rise to almost 697 feet above mean sea level by tomorrow afternoon, despite having four flood gates open. That would be sixteen feet above full. Have to check but that might be a record height. That’s just from the rain that’s fallen so far. More rain is expected out there tonight.

UPDATE LCRA has closed the lake to recreational boating. City of Austin has, likewise, closed its waterways. Debris, etc. 

Turn around, don’t drown

With big storms moving in from the north, and some places out near the lakes picking up 3 inches or more, according to the LCRA’s automated guages, it seems timely to repeat the weather service slogan for low-water crossers, and to pass along this great site’s complete approach to Texas floods. For the rare reader who might benefit. I realize this isn’t radio, but it’s tempting to treat it that way sometimes. It’s not hard to get excited. We live in the most flash-flood prone part of North America.

Goodbye to storms

More clusters of severe thunderstorms moving in from the northwest, just like last evening. Bob Rose says we might as well enjoy the thunder and lightning, as these cells may be the last we see or a while:

"This may be the beginning of our typical summer weather pattern. If today’s long-range solutions are correct, today’s storm activity could be the last of the spring-like storms our region will see this month."

From dry to wet


Lower Colorado River Authority graph shows how far and how fast Lake Travis has risen since last Tuesday, thanks to the weekend storms in the watershed. The lake is now forecast to hit 684 feet above mean sea level by Thursday, without any more rain. That would be a rise of 11 feet. I didn’t bother to visit the marina this morning, figuring the parking lot would be under water. Certainly is now. Ah, well, I have other chores including a backyard to mow when the wet grass dries out by tomorrow.

Lake on the rise

The rancho and most of the area has been spared any severe flooding so far, but Lake Travis is rising like a rocket. According to the LCRA: the Llano River is running more than 12,000 cubic feet per second, when a few hundred is normal. The Llano flows into the upper lakes whose dams pass their excess downstream to Travis. Meanwhile the Pedernales, which flows directly into Travis, is running more than 6,000 cubic feet per second, when a few hundred is normal. Meanwhile, Lake Travis is at 681.22 feet above mean sea level, which is full–for the first time since April, 2005.

The parking lot at Anderson Mill marina was mostly underwater Sunday morning. The lake was more than 12 inches lower at that point. The extra foot could have drowned the rest of the lot. The river authority is keenly aware of all this and may have to open another gate or two on the dam to slow the rise. They don’t like to squander the water, and so have been releasing only enough to generate electricity. But opening more may be necessary to prevent flooding on the lake. Which, in turn, might mean dock and other shoreline damage to folks who live downstream on Lake Austin. A complicated juggling act.