Earlier this “winter”, the water level in the lake was very low. The question now is why is it back up to normal summer level.
Some may think that the valve was closed. That is not the case. The valve has been open since November and will remain open until we close it in March.
Simply put, the recent input of water has far exceeded the output of water. Over the past 3 weekends, we have received rainfall amounts between .5 inches to over 1.5 inches. Unfortunately, the forecast is calling for another 1 inch of rain this weekend.
One item to consider is that our watershed is approximately 15,000 acres. Choctaw Lake is 285 acres. If we were to get 1 inch of runoff water from our entire watershed, that would equal 4.5′ of lake water. (Note that number is runoff water, not total precipitation of a storm.)
Each rain event affects the lake differently. One big factor that we dealt with last weekend, is that the top layer of the ground was frozen. This situation creates much more runoff water reaching our lake. This is a big reason why the lake level jumped up so much this past weekend. This weekend we will be dealing with ground conditions that are very saturated. I am expecting water levels to rise to the level that will result in water going over the spillway.
I hope you found this article helpful. Feel free to contact me, or shoot me an email if you have any question about the lake level or the dam. The valve is still open. It will stay up until we close it in March.
Have a good day! Mike C.