Rain causes flooding near Keystone Lake

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Story by: Janai Norman
Updated: 8/13/2013 12:35 pm Published: 8/13/2013 12:27 pm

Tuesday morning’s rain only added to already swelling area lakes.

Keystone Lake was 10.6 feet above normal level and rising as of Tuesday according the Army Corps of Engineers.

FOX23 News’ Janai Norman found out there are three water levels for area lakes:  the inactive level when there isn’t much water, and then there’s the conservation level which the army corps of engineers tries to main for things like water supply.

But with rain like we’ve had, the lake can reach flood control storage levels, and that’s where many area lakes are.

“I haven’t seen Keystone like this probably in 2, maybe 3 years,” fisherman Robert Nuttall said.

Army Corps of Engineers reports Keystone’s flood storage is 24% full and rising.

That means some low lying campgrounds like New Manford and Washington Irving are flooding, but a spokesman says that’s a sign the water management systems are working as they should.

Nuttall says “We have to hold water here or it floods downstream.”

He’s been fishing at Keystone Lake for nearly 50 years and says the high levels make fishing tougher, but it has its benefits.

“You catch bigger fish when the water is like this,” he began. “I hooked one Friday that almost pulled me off the rock.”

Searching a report of area lakes, FOX23 News found most are above their normal levels, something the Army Corps of Engineers says is very unusual for August.

And for anyone enjoying the river, the fisherman heeds caution.

“You have to really be careful around this water.”

As of Tuesday, the Army Corps of Engineers says Keystone Lake is releasing 32,000 cubic feet of water every second.  To put that into perspective, that’s enough water to fill an Olympic sized swimming pool every three seconds.

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