AUSTIN (KXAN) – One week ago, the level of Lake Travis stood at 625.00 feet above sea level – more than 45 feet below the monthly average. Wednesday morning, Lake Travis is up a full 2.31 feet thanks to these latest rounds of heavy rain.
Just a couple of weeks ago, a broad swath of Central Texas saw more than 3″ of rain. That round of precipitation did not do much for the Highland Lakes. This time, it’s different.
Rainfall over the past two weeks has served to replenish moisture in the thirsty soil – meaning additional rain is more likely to run off instead of getting soaked up.
After all the runoff flows into Lake Travis from tributary creeks and rivers, the lake is forecast to rise a total of as much as 3 feet.
Lake Buchanan measured in last week at nearly 26 feet below the average level for May (987.28 ft). Wednesday morning, levels are up 1.28 feet.
After existing runoff reaches Lake Buchanan, the lake is forecast to rise a total of 1.72 feet.
To put this in perspective, recent heavy rains of 3-6 inches are far from enough to bust the drought.
Assuming the soil absorbed the same amount each time, filling Lake Travis would need a similar amount of rain 17 times in a row.
Lake Buchanan would require 18 similar rain events to fill the lake.