Fishing season kicking off with higher water levels - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Fishing season kicking off with higher water levels


According to business owners near East Texas lakes, business has been down since the drought has dried up the water.

But just in the last few weeks, rain has raised the level of the water in the lakes, increasing business.

No rain, means no lake water, which means no business for Larry Paxton.

"It's just been a terrible, terrible year," says Paxton, the General Manager at Lake Palestine Resort.  

Losing over a quarter of his business in the last year, Paxton is happy to see rain has come to East Texas.

"We're kind of leveled off now, so looks like we will end up having a good year, which we need desperately," says Paxton.  

Fisherman Chuck Bice says the lack of water has kept them from fishing in the last few months, "I've been in this lake since probably the early 60's and this is the lowest I've ever seen it." 

Paxton says people have finally begun to show up this week, thanks to the water level.

Just a few weeks ago there was absolutely no water along the inland, some boats couldn't even dock, but Larry says now there's enough water all boats on Lake Palestine should be able to dock.

"It's nice seeing it up high because we can actually get the boat in the water several places," says Fisherman Scott Bragg.  

"We've come from 7 and a half feet down to 3 feet down, so that's the improvement we have gotten very recently," says Paxton.

Paxton and fisherman across East Texas hope they are just starting to see the start of a great season.

"If we don't have a drought like we did last year, we continue to get some water in the lake, we'll get back up to where we really should be," says Paxton.

Estimates have many East Texas lakes still about three to five feet low, up from seven to ten feet low at this time last year.

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