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Lake inflows level off, slow discharges arrive

[ 0 ] May 6, 2017 |

To see updated levels, go to the home page and click on Lake Levels on the upper menu bar

By JOHN M. WYLIE II, Editor

Oologah Lake’s water level remains over 19 feet above normal, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Water inflow has slowed to a, and small amounts of water began to be released at noon today.

Officials note that the needs of Oologah Lake also must be balanced against the needs of other lakes and the need to minimize downstream flooding as much as possible during what have been extraordinary rainfall conditions.

The storms have covered a huge watershed in Oklahoma and Kansas affecting numerous Corps lakes and Grand River Dam Authority lakes whose outflows also are controlled as part of the master plan.

As of 11 a.m. Saturday, the Oologah lake level was 657.14 feet, 19.14 feet above normal. Four gates were opened 1/2 foot and three others were opened 1 foot, releasing 3,684 cfs (cubic feet/second) of water. By 5 p.m., the lake level had already showed a measurable drop to 657.13 feet above normal.

That wasn’t enough to cut the percent of the flood pool filled, 78.22 percent of the flood pool, but it was a step in the right direction. That coupled with a dry forecast and inflows that were negligible is the first good news for those who are hoping water will start going down.

Inflows had topped out at over 60,000 cfs Monday, had dropped to just 2,476 cfs at 10 a.m. today.

“We will increase our release to 10,000 cfs on Sunday,” Raef Perryman, Assistant Lake Manager, said.

While many recreational facilities are closed, Vada Point Ramp and Allens Point Ramp remained open. Updates on facility status will be posted as they become available.

“We are urging the visiting public to use extreme caution if they choose to visit the lake during this time.

“Be mindful of the barricades and cones, as they are in place for their safety. If they are out in the water, please use a life jacket and be mindful of possible submerged objects,” Perryman said.

As of late Friday facilities closed included: Blue Creek Campground; Hawthorn Boat Ramp; Spencer Creek Boat Ramp; Sunnyside Boat Ramp and Day Use Area; Hawthorn Bluff Fishing docks, Courtesy Dock, Ramp, and Beach; Blue Creek Boat Ramp; Red Bud Boat Ramp; Blue Creek Horse Trail Camping Loop; Claremont Boat Ramp and Day Use Area; Spencer Creek Swim Beach and Boat Ramp; a small number of campsites in Hawthorn Bluff, Blue Creek, and Spencer Creek, mostly non-electric.

Anyone with inquiries about camp site closures may contact the park directly: Hawthorn Bluff, 918-443-2319; Blue Creek, 918-341-4244 (Gate House Closed Tuesday & Wednesday); Spencer Creek, 918-341-3690 (Gate House Closed Tuesday & Wednesday).

 

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