OUR WATER: The E.V. Spence Reservoir


In the golden hours of morning and evening light, steep rocky bluffs exhibit a brilliant show of color and texture. From the cliff-side perch Outlook Point, a calm day perfectly reflects a brilliant azure sky. Summer and fall thunderstorms can be observed from miles away, dumping precious liquid water in distinct rain shafts as thunder rolls across the wide-open landscape.

Visiting the beautiful E.V. Spence reservoir is a day trip to enjoy. Located near Robert Lee, Texas, the lake offers four parks, recreational boating, camping, and fishing as its main attractions. For fishermen, the recent rains allow cover for fish in river and creek channels and coves to mud flats. In parts of the river channel, when the lake is full, depths of over 100 feet can be recorded.

The reservoir was impounded by the creation of Robert Lee Dam in 1969. In September 2012, severe drought took its toll as the lake reached its lowest level of 0.19% full, 87.86 vertical feet below the full elevation mark. After heavy rains in September and October of 2018, the reservoir is at 24.4% full, impounding 126.2K acre-feet (41.1 billion gallons) of water, 38.6 vertical feet below the full elevation mark.

A distinctive feature of the reservoir is its powder-blue and white circular spillway gate located approximately in the middle of the 21,500 foot long (just over 4 miles) earthen dam. The 140 foot tall (structural height) dam captures runoff from a watershed area 4,140 square miles (262.4K acres) in size.

Access to the lake
Entrance fee is $5 per vehicle for a day pass which covers all persons in the vehicle. Annual vehicle passes are available at $60 or $10 for senior citizens. The Rough Creek area is currently closed. Three paved boat ramps are available, depending on water levels. (TPWD)

By the numbers
Location: Colorado River, Coke County, approximately 2 miles west of Robert Lee
Surface area: 14,640 acres
Maximum depth: 108 feet
Full pool elevation: 1,898.00
Impounded: 1969
Predominant fish species: Striped bass, white bass, largemouth bass, catfishes

Fishing tips & tactics
Largemouth bass are caught by fishing minnows, crank-baits, spinner baits, plastic worms, and top-water baits around the areas with rocks, flooded terrestrial vegetation, or drop-offs. Catfishes are caught on live bait and cut bait throughout the reservoir. (TPWD)

Sources (links are clickable):
Texas Parks and Wildlife

Colorado River Municipal Water District

Lakes Online

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

More Stories for you

• U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz Rallies at The Life Church
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz rallied in San Angleo for his final bus tour and he discussed issues such as immigration, making …

• TEXAS DPS offers safety tips for Halloween safety
The Texas Department of Public Safety is urging parents and children to make safety a top priority during their…

• Haunted History part 2
It was 1878, little Edith Grierson was just 8 years old. Typhoid claimed her life. The history of Fort Concho is filled…

• San Angelo Realtors Association endorses Judge Susan Werner for Justice of the Peace, Pct. 1
The following is a press release from the San Angelo Realtors Association: Following a process that included …

• Texas farmers and ranchers honored for century of service
AUSTIN (Nexstar) — Farmers and ranchers from across Texas were honored by the state’s agriculture leaders for o…

• Texas farmers and ranchers honored for century of service
AUSTIN (Nexstar) — Farmers and ranchers from across Texas were honored by the state’s agriculture leaders for o…

• City strives to patch potholes
City crews are taking advantage of the break in rain to set about patching up potholes throughout San Angelo. But, …

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Current status of COVID-19 testing in San Angelo

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. 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!