OUR WATER: Lake Ballinger’s twin basins fill


Just west of the city, about 10 miles, there is a destination few may know of: Ballinger City Lake, or more commonly, just “Lake Ballinger.”

From an entry in the Texas State Historical Associations’ website, a description of the original lake: “The earthfill dam was completed in 1947; it is thirty feet high and 4,400 feet long, has a 400-foot spillway, and impounds up to 8,215 acre-feet. The lake is owned by the city of Ballinger. It is used for debris control and municipal water supply.”

The lake is now comprised of twin basins. The newer of the basins, appropriately named “New Ballinger Lake,” was impounded in 1984, and is constructed downstream of the original. It has a listed elevation of 1668 feet as its full capacity. It is currently at 1666.8, and a controlled release of water is being performed that flows underneath the new dam, joining the Colorado River a short distance away.

The water released from the lake joins the Colorado just south of the new dam, which then flows through the southern area of Ballinger. In the southeast part of the city, Elm Creek, which is also currently flowing, also joins the Colorado River, making its way to the O.H. Ivie Reservoir. The creeks are expected to flow for some time to come, and with new rain in the forecast [90% Wednesday – click here], they may be flowing for an extended period to come.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department list the following as the predominate species of game fish in the lake: Largemouth bass, white crappie, white bass, and channel & blue catfish. For more about fishing the lake — records, current lake condition, stocking history and more, [PLEASE CLICK HERE.]

For the latest statistics on the six Concho Valley reservoirs, please click below:

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Water Conservation Status

Standard Conservation

San Angelo is in standard conservation, which restricts outside watering to once every seven days at no more than 1 inch per week. Watering is allowed during any part of the day, but runoff of more than 150 feet down any street, gutter, alley or ditch is prohibited.

Report watering violations by clicking on https://www.cosatx.us/departments-services/water-conservation/report-a-water-violation or calling 325-657-4409. Do your part; be water smart!