“We hear all the rumors, every day,” said Richard Ellis, Bridgeport Lake superintendent. He said the major ones are:
- “We’re just going to close the lake.”
- “We’re going to drain the lake to kill zebra mussels (which we don’t have).”
- “We’re going to drain the lake to work on a pump (which we also don’t have).”
- “We’re going to drain the lake to work on the dam (which we’re not).”
- “We’re going to drain the lake to allow Devon [Energy] to get out to work on Rattlesnake Island.”
All the reservoirs in the chain of lakes managed by the Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) are low. Richland-Chambers in Navarro County, the second-lowest of the lakes TRWD manages, is just under 6 feet low.
But Bridgeport is 17 feet below conservation pool, and that fuels the rumors.
Ellis said said all but two of Bridgeport’s public boat ramps are closed due to low lake levels.
“You go out to Wise County Park, and it’s just incredible. Vinchner Creek is just dry.”
The Wise County Park ramp is one of the two still open. The other is at Runaway Bay on the opposite end of the lake.
The level of all TRWD lakes is carefully managed to balance a host of water demands. Among the factors weighed: the legally binding contracts TRWD has with a host of entities who use water.
TRWD hydrologist Laura Blaylock said a few decisions have been made on how the lake will be managed this year.