LCRA gives outlook on Central Texas lakes and drought

AUSTIN -- Looking at the rains we had this week, it's a sight for sore eyes!

While we finally saw a rise in Lakes Travis and Buchanan - albeit a small one - they are still very low at a combined 37%.

The Lower Colorado River Authority hosted local meteorologists Wednesday, giving an update on the lakes and what we could expect going into the summer and fall months.

Chris Riley, LCRA's river operations center supervisor, said this week's rains bought us a little more time, but, "If conditions don't improve and we don't get additional rainfall, then we're going to continue to see a drop - it's possible that we could be down to historic levels down later in the summer, around August," he said.

In that case, we would surpass the drought of record in the 1940s and '50s.

Riley said the best thing to happen would be for us to get rain next week. "This rainfall did saturate the ground, so if we get another round of showers here in the next week or two, that could really make things beneficial," he explained.

LCRA Meteorologist Bob Rose said this summer looks like it will resemble the last two - hot and dry. While El Nino - which usually means a wetter pattern for Central Texas - continues to develop - he said it will have little to no effect on our region this summer. Instead, he says, we would have to wait until late summer or fall for El Nino's effects to be felt.

"That's when we begin to start seeing more of an influence that will allow the storm systems from the Pacific - just the typical low-pressure systems - to move across Mexico and begin to move into Texas," said Rose.

Because of this, Rose said it's a matter of getting past this long, hot summer before the El Nino rains arrive. "Right now, we're really optimistic - we're encouraged - (the) weather pattern will begin to change; we'll get more toward a wetter pattern - we'll see more frequent rains around the area - more heavy rains as we get into late September and October."

While we were happy to see the rain this week, don't be fooled: The drought is still very serious, and we need more rain - soon.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment