Spring rain in Texas has finally saturated both the ground and the water storage areas of the state. Additional rainfall is now bringing flooding in many places, though in Lampasas as of this morning there had been no serious problems.
The big problems stretch from Houston and the coastline all the way north, up to Central Texas.
Reports this morning told of at least 5 dead from flooding in the Houston area and one internet news service posted a headline saying it was “biblical proportions”. The flooding was also described to be comparable to the Tropical Storm Allison in 2001.
A common occurrence on Wednesday was people with cell phones looking at a facebook post of an SUV being washed off a New Braunfels crossing into the raging waters. Many, if not most, of the dozen or so lives lost in flooding in Texas so far seem to come from drivers carelessly trying to go over low water crossings and being washed away.
Reports this morning warned of possible flooding from expected heavy rainfall in Central Texas today, including Lampasas, but especially the river areas south of here.
West of here, the Colorado River at Bend is on a big rise, peaking at 16.5 ft early this morning and with a flow of up to 17,672 cubic feet per second. That, compared to a depth of about 8.5 feet a week ago and a flow of about 1,044 cfs at that time. That water feeds directly into Buchanan Lake, to the south.
Buchanan Lake's Dam is releasing water through one floodgate fully opened this morning, Inks Lake is going over the spillway and still rising. The inflows to lakes LBJ and Marble Falls are increasing and floodgates are opening at Wirtz and Starcke Dams. Lake Travis, the final big impounding lake is full and three floodgates are open today to pass the overflow into Lake Austin where the final Tom Miller Dam has three floodgates spilling water on down into the river and headed to the Gulf Coast.
Most of the rainfall that comes to Lampasas County winds up going into the Brazos River instead of the Colorado.
Sulphur Creek, Mesquite, School Creek, Lucy and many other creeks of the county feed into the Lampasas river, which goes to Stillhouse Hollow lake, then into the Brazos and that goes on south to the coast.
The Brazos seems to have caused most of the destruction in the Houston area as it is said to have hit a century high at about 7.5 ft above flood stage. The Lampasas River at Kempner was at 3.49 ft above flood level this morning with a flow of 1,100cfs, compared to a typical 71cfs. The Stillhouse Hollow Lake is currently 12.6ft above normal and is releasing water at a rate of 1cfs.