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Stillhouse Hollow Lake gets a boost from recent rainfall; updates on local water levels

Bell County water levels
Posted at 5:28 PM, Apr 16, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-16 20:12:18-04

BELL COUNTY, Texas — Stillhouse Hollow Lake recieved a boost from recent rainfalll, but it’s still not where the community needs it to be.

According to 25 News Meteorologist Josh Johns, it’s all across Bell County.

”Lake levels took a pretty good rise across Bell County thanks to the rain we saw last week,” Johns said.

“Again, we saw some pretty heavy total — close to six to seven inch rainfall totals.”

This is great news for folks at Kempner Water Supply, who gets its water from Stillhouse, providing for more than 20,000 Central Texans.

25 News spoke with Kempner Water Supply’s General Manager, Bruce Sorenson, who says they're in good shape, but levels are slightly lower than previous years.

”I would make the comment that last year we were at 609 feet at this time,” Sorenson said.

“We’re actually two feet lower that we were at this time last year.”

Stillhouse Hollow is currently around 607 feet.

”Stillhouse Hallow actually came up about 2.6 feet,” Johns said.

“That doesn’t sound like a lot, but every little bit helps. Belton’s is still down about 9.4 feet below where it should be, and Stillhouse Hallow is about 15 feet below.”

It’s a level you can see.

Water Levels.mp4

A yellow line is supposed to mark the safe distance for swimming but if you look past it, you can see the water is far beyond it, showing you how low the lake still is.

This level is low, but still in good shape for Kempner Water Supply, who spent months in a Stage Four restriction while they completed construction and increased their capacity.

”Our water plant has gone up by two million in capacity,” Sorenson said.

It still isn’t where it needs to be, but the forecast looks promising.

”At least looking at the extended patterns,” Johns said.

“It looks like we could have a more active pattern going into May, which is typical. May is usually one of our wettest months.”

Water levels are at a decent spot, but swimming areas like the one at Dana Peak will remain closed until the marked off area is back under water.

Kempner Water Supply is currently operating under a water level system that determines the level of water restriction in place.

The water needs to be above 604 feet to be at a Stage One restriction, and right now, it is.

They are currently at a Stage Two restriction, because the lake needs to maintain that level for at least 30 days.