Situation Report  
   
 
SummaryLast Update: May 22 2015 11:31AM

As of 11:30 AM, Friday May 22:

The weather was fairly clear over the Colorado River watershed overnight. However, stream flows are still elevated due to the heavy rains that fell over portions of the Highland Lakes watershed Thursday night, May 20 - 21. Hydro generation at Inks, Wirtz and Starcke dams has been used to pass through direct rainfall to lakes Inks, LBJ and Marble Falls, and inflows from Sandy Creek near Kingsland and other areas near the lakes.

The Llano River near Junction peaked near one foot above Flood Stage Thursday morning, May 21, at 5:40 AM. This flow reached the Llano River at Llano this morning and peaked at 14,000 cfs at 5:10 AM. Additional hydro generation can be expected at Wirtz and Starcke dams as this water is passed through this morning. Lakes LBJ and Marble Falls will be maintained near the bottom of their usual operating ranges until the higher inflows are passed.

Based on current conditions, Lake Travis is expected to rise to between 636 and 637 feet msl today, and to continue to rise over the weekend. Lake Buchanan is expected to continue to rise slowly. Floodgate operations are NOT expected at any LCRA dams based on current conditions.

The Colorado River downstream of the Highland Lakes remains elevated due to the rains last week and on Monday. Flows in the River from Austin to Bay City are slowly receding. The table of River Levels and Forecasts below contains links to the latest river levels and National Weather Service river forecasts.

Forecasts can change quickly with additional rainfall. Unscheduled releases from the Highland Lakes dams may occur suddenly and unexpectedly at any time to pass inflows to the lakes or other reasons. The public should exercise caution and avoid being in the water near the dams at all times.

When flash floods threaten, avoid unnecessary travel. If you must travel, don't drive into flooded roadways. Remember "Turn Around, Don't Drown."

See the Central Texas 5-Day Forecast for the latest weather updates from LCRA meteorologist, Bob Rose.

See the River Report for current information about LCRA's daily water supply operations and long-range forecasts for lakes Buchanan and Travis.

 
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  Current Lake Levels at Dams and Gate Operations
*Disclaimer: Data is automatically retrieved and subject to revision.
Lake/DamTimeHead Elevation (Above Dam)Tail Elevation (Below Dam)Gate Operations/Spillway
Buchanan/BuchananMay 23 2015 5:15AM989.51887.23May 22 2015 11:31AM No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.
Inks/InksMay 23 2015 5:15AM887.15824.92May 22 2015 11:31AM Flow over the spillway is not expected at this time. (Inks Dam has a spillway, but no floodgates.)
LBJ/WirtzMay 23 2015 5:00AM824.50737.39May 22 2015 11:31AM No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.
Marble Falls/StarckeMay 23 2015 5:15AM736.35676.20May 22 2015 11:31AM No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.
Travis/MansfieldMay 23 2015 5:15AM636.75492.33May 22 2015 11:32AM No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.
Austin/MillerMay 23 2015 5:15AM492.36428.46May 22 2015 11:32AM No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.
 
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  Lake Levels Over the Last 7 Days
*Disclaimer: Data is automatically retrieved and subject to revision.
Floodgate Operations and Forecasts  
 
Lake Buchanan
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:31AM

Inflows: Inflows are below levels that would require flood operations.

Gate Operations: No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake Buchanan is expected to rise slowly over the next 24 hours.
 
 
Inks Lake
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:31AM

Inflows: Inflows are below levels that would require flood operations.

Spillway: Flow over the spillway is not expected at this time. (Inks Dam has a spillway, but no floodgates.)

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake level is expected to remain within its normal operating range.
 
 
Lake LBJ
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:31AM

Inflows: Inflows are below levels that require flood operations.

Gate Operations: No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake level is expected to remain within or slightly below its normal operating range.
 
 
Lake Marble Falls
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:31AM

Inflows: Inflows to the lake are exceeding the capacity of the turbines.

Gate Operations: No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake level is expected to remain within or slightly below its normal operating range.
 
 
Lake Travis
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:32AM

Inflows: Inflows are below levels that would require flood operations.

Gate Operations: No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake Travis is expected to rise to between 636 and 637 today, and continue to rise over the weekend of May 22 - 24.
 
 
Lake Austin
Last Update: May 22 2015 11:32AM

Inflows: Inflows are below levels that would require flood operations.

Gate Operations: No gate operations for flood are expected at this time.

Lake level forecast (Forecast is subject to change as conditions develop): Lake level is expected to remain within its normal operating range.
 
 
LCRA does not own or operate Lady Bird Lake and Longhorn Dam. Lake levels are shown for information, but forecasts are not available.  
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  River Levels and Forecasts
 
  River forecasts are provided by the National Weather Service River Forecast Center. Click on the "Forecast" link to view the forecast and other useful information for each location.
 
 
*Disclaimer: Data is automatically retrieved and subject to revision.
Bank Full Stage Flood Stage
Upper Basin LocationBank Full Stage(ft)Flood Stage(ft)Current Stage(ft)Current Flow(cfs)Latest Forecast And More
Colorado River at Winchell24.026.0 2.58 12Forecast
Pecan Bayou near Mullin20.040.0 1.02 26Forecast
San Saba River at Menard12.018.0 2.55 17Forecast
San Saba River near Brady16.030.0 2.23 22Forecast
San Saba River at San Saba20.024.0 3.07 76Forecast
Colorado River near San Saba25.030.0 2.39 155Forecast
Llano River near Junction12.016.0 3.33 490Forecast
Llano River near Mason6.013.0 4.15 1507Forecast
Beaver Creek near Mason9.012.0 2.13 30Forecast
Llano River at Llano10.010.0 4.44 2633Forecast
Sandy Creek near Kingsland8.012.0 6.35 280Forecast
Pedernales River near Fredericksburg12.022.0 6.15 102Forecast
Pedernales River near Johnson City13.014.0 10.70 273Forecast
 
 
Lower Basin LocationBank Full Stage(ft)Flood Stage(ft)Current Stage(ft)Current Flow(cfs)Latest Forecast And More
Barton Creek at Loop 360, Austin8.08.0 4.01 206Forecast
Colorado River at Austin25.033.0 13.23 299Forecast
Onion Creek at Hwy 183, Austin15.017.0 6.54 112Forecast
Colorado River at Bastrop14.023.0 4.04 1274Forecast
Colorado River at Smithville10.020.0 2.82 1422Forecast
Colorado River above La Grange19.026.0 5.92 1973Forecast
Colorado River at Columbus30.034.0 13.53 3420Forecast
Colorado River at Wharton20.039.0 15.64 4984Forecast
Colorado River at Bay City23.044.0 11.47 6351Forecast
San Bernard River at East Bernard13.017.0 13.10 495Forecast
Colorado River at Matagorda4.88.8 1.47  N/A
 
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  Useful Links
 
  LCRA Hydromet Real Time Data
http://hydromet.lcra.org/

LCRA Weather Summary
http://www.lcra.org/water/river-and-weather/weather-summary/Pages/default.aspx

How LCRA's System of Dams Works
http://www.lcra.org/water/floods/Pages/how-lcra-system-of-dams-works.aspx

Key elevations for Lake Travis during floods
http://www.lcra.org/water/flood/laketravisreleases.html

Emergency Information for City of Austin (includes boating restrictions)
http://www.austintexas.gov/department/hsem

Road Closures in Austin and Surrounding Areas (hosted by City of Austin)
http://www.atxfloods.com/

USGS Real-time Streamflow for Texas
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/tx/nwis/current/?type=flow

USGS Real-time Lakes and Reservoirs for Texas
http://waterdata.usgs.gov/tx/nwis/current?type=lake

NWS 5-day Rain Forecasts
http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/qpf/day1-5.shtml

NWS West Gulf River Forecast Center Quick Briefing
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/wgrfc/HMDmain.php

NWS San Angelo Weather Office and Flood Forecasts Map
http://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=sjt

NWS Austin/San Antonio Weather Office and Flood Forecasts Map
http://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=ewx

NWS Houston/Galveston Weather Office and Flood Forecasts Map
http://water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=hgx

NWS Doppler Radars
http://radar.weather.gov/ridge/Conus/southplains.php
http://radar.weather.gov/ridge/Conus/full_loop.php

NWS Storm Prediction Center (Tornadoes and severe storms)
http://www.spc.noaa.gov

NWS National Hurricane Center (Hurricanes and tropical storms)
http://www.nhc.noaa.gov

 
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  Words and Definitions
 
 

Water Glossary

Action Stage: The stage at which some sort of action is taken for a point along the river. Action Stage is different for all points depending on the community's needs - it may be flooding of secondary roads or just a "heads up" that the river is rising. Action Stage is determined by the National Weather Service. Sometimes used interchangeably with Bank Full Stage.

Bank Full Stage: The stage at which a river will not overflow its river banks or cause any significant damage within the river reach. Bank Full Stage is determined by the National Weather Service. Sometimes used interchangeably with action stage.

Cubic Feet per Second (cfs): A measure of streamflow. One CFS is equal to about 450 gallons per minute.

Elevation: The height of water in a lake or reservoir above mean sea level.

Flash Flood: A flood which follows within a few hours of heavy or excessive rainfall.

Flash Flood Warning: Flash flooding has been reported or is imminent – take necessary precautions.

Flash Flood Watch: Flash flooding is possible within the designated watch area – be alert.

Floodgates: Solid gates that are opened as needed to release floodwaters.

Flood Stage: The stage at which roads or buildings begin to get affected. Flood Stage is determined by the National Weather Service.

Hydrogeneration: Using water that is passed through a dam to generate electrical power with a turbine.

Mean Sea Level (msl): The elevation of the ocean halfway between high and low tide. Elevations are measured in feet above mean sea level as a point of reference.

Operating Range: The elevations between which the lakes are operated during normal conditions. Lake levels can fluctuate outside of these ranges at times.

Pass-Through Lakes: Lakes designed to allow water to pass through as opposed to being stored. Pass-through lakes do not have a constant level. Lakes Inks, LBJ, Marble Falls and Austin are "pass-through" lakes.

Spillway: The area of a dam that is designed to allow water to flow freely over it.

Stage: The height of water flowing in a river above a nearby reference point, for example, the height of the water above the river bed.

Please call the LCRA river and lake information line at 1-800-776-5272 for more information.

 
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