Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

May 13, 2014

Still high and dry

By Janet Jacobs
Corsicana Daily Sun

Corsicana — Navarro County has gotten nearly half a foot of rain fall since Thursday, but it won’t mean six inches in the Richland Chambers Reservoir.

Since last week, the lake level at Richland Chambers has risen slightly, but is still below what it was a month ago, and is nearly eight feet below where is should be ideally.

The county got significant rain last Thursday, Friday and then Monday. The totals were 2.42 inches Thursday, .41 Friday, and 2.98 inches on Monday, according to the National Weather Service. And some portions of the county did better than others. On Monday, the rain gauge at Navarro Mills recorded 3.18 inches.

It can take a few days for runoff to impact lake levels, but the area is going to need a lot more rain to bring it up to where it should be in spring, said Meteorologist Matt Bishop with the National Weather Service.

“Everybody’s below normal, as far as lake levels go,” Bishop said. “It would take several more significant rainfalls to get the whole region back up.”

Even with all the rains lately, it won’t have too much of an impact on the lake level, said Chad Lorance, communications manager for the Tarrant Regional Water District, which owns the water in the lake.

“Since Sunday night it has come up .0788 of a foot,” Lorance said. “What has to happen is the ground has to get very saturated (for there to be enough runoff).”

Lakes near Arlington, for example, have filled up nicely from the recent rains, but Arlington has a lot more concrete and paved surface than Navarro County.

Comparatively, Richland Chambers is doing better than Lake Bridgeport, which is northwest of the Metroplex. That reservoir is 22 feet below full, and the region hasn’t gotten much rain at all in the last week, Lorance said.

Navarro Mills is at 100 percent capacity, but Navarro Mills is much smaller than Richland Chambers. Navarro Mills is just under 5,000 acres, while Richland Chambers is more than 36,000 acres.