Despite Recent Showers East Texas Lakes Continue To Be Low - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

2/25/06-Wood County

Despite Recent Showers East Texas Lakes Continue To Be Low

Despite the rain this past week, lake levels in East Texas continue to be at an all-time low. Right now, the levels are down anywhere from four to ten feet.

"The reason we're at a little more than four feet low here at Lake Fork is because in 2005 we had less than 19-and-a-half inches of rain, and we'll average 44 to 45 inches of rain," said Operations Manager for Sabine River Authority Donnie Henson.

The Sabine River Authority oversees several lakes in Northeast Texas. Henson says he's glad to finally see some rain, but knows it's going to take a lot more to fill Lake Fork back up. "Right now, we need eight or nine inches of good rain in a months time," said Henson. "Even if the drought continues obviously we'll see the lake go down a little bit more, but if we have a normal spring, Lake Fork will fill back up. We expect it to."

That is good news for those cities that get their water supply from the lake. Henson says it would take two or three years of a severe drought to hurt their water supply. As for the fishing, things seem to be fine. "We caught this fish probably about 10 o'clock this morning," said fisherman Randy Horton. "It's roughly seven pounds." Earlier this week, a Missouri man caught a 15-pound fish, so the fish are biting. But, getting around, fisherman say isn't as easy.

"The greater dangers are just the hazards of running through the lake, stumps and things like that," said Horton. It's a risk many fisherman say they are willing to take.

The Sabine River Authority says the quality of the water has not been effected by the drought. So far this month, East Texas has seen anywhere from two to six inches of rain.

Molly Reuter reporting,

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