Wednesday, September 06, 2017

August 2017 Lake Levels and Flow Rates

A wonky August chart with something of an impulse the first week when lake levels reached a half a foot higher than full pool (660'). A little over the 660' level is no big deal, except when it happens rapidly and on the weekend when boat traffic is heavy and wave activity is at maximum. It tends to trash up the lake with debris. I personally lost a chunk of one of my out-drives on this one. This impulse of water required the flood gates be opened for a few days and rapidly brought levels back down.

The other notable trend is at the end of the month when maximum flow (power generation) occurred the week leading up to the Labor Day holiday, bringing lake levels well below 659'. Temperatures were modest so grid demand should have been light, but from the chart we can see a very deliberate drawing down of the lake. As I've said before, this is an annual happening but for reasons that are not clear to me. The curve guide Ameren uses doesn't call for any draw down below full pool this time of year, but yet they do it. If the trend follows previous years, in the coming weeks Ameren will gradually bring the lake back up to full pool before slowly bringing things down again by the end of the year.