Monday, July 18, 2011

Water, Water... Nowhere...

This Sunday we ran a big water package about the drought in the area. Most of the local lakes are below 50% capacity. Between the fast evaporation rate from more than 30 days of 100+ degree heat this summer combines with the almost three months of no rain (I think there has been measurable rainfall in the area twice in the last three months). So, I ended up taking a few road trips around the area to shoot some of the lakes in the area. Pretty much all but one were in really bad shape, a couple were really just glorified mud puddles, it was really awful. However, it made for some really nice and storytelling photos.
It was really interesting, the first place I went to was Lake Brownwood, south of Abilene. One of the places I went to was a place I had last been to in 2007 when the lake was flooding. It was really crazy since the parking lot I had parked in was under six inches of water. This time when I went out there I took photos of some people tanning near the water about 40 yards from where the shoreline was supposed to be.
It's been a while since I've taken a real road trip around the area that wasn't sports related, so checking out all of these places from a news perspective was a little out of the norm. One of the places I went to was Lake JB Thomas near Snyder. This lake was barely even a lake it this point, it's kind of weird, the lake has never been more than 37% full and it's currently down to only three percent. As I was driving down one of the roads to get to the water I looked down at my GPS (pic below) to see how close I was and it showed I was in what should have been the middle of the lake, yet the water was still about 400 yards from my car! As I went further to the western side of the lake, there were areas that were so overgrown it looked like there had never even been any water in the so-called lake bed ever, I'm not sure if it was bad engineering or wishful thinking or a combination of both. The whole trip was a really eye opening experience that pretty much told the story of just how precious water is in this area.












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