Drilling Down On Lake Level

Revisions to Devils Lake Bathymetry

The Devils Lake Water Improvement District (DLWID) contracted with MaxDepth Aquatics, Inc. in 2004 to develop a new bathymetric map and to conduct an analysis of the sediments in Devils Lake. The objective of conducting a new bathymetric survey was to provide a high-resolution map of the lake that could serve as a benchmark against which to judge future changes. The bathymetric survey for Devils Lake was conducted on March 24-25, 2004 at a time when the lake stage was at 8.75 ft MSL.  Subsequently, it the District discovered that lake gauges were .22 ft off from the correct elevation and have since been replaced.  The result was the publication of a bathymetry map of Devils Lake.  Given the relatively low level of the lake at the time of the original study, only minor modifications were required to illustrate levels that might occur should the District fail to install the impoundment structure. To that end, we re-colored the original map moving the color gradient by one value throughout the map.

 

A careful examination of the original map on the District’s home page and our re-colored version raise some concerns.  Our revised bathymetry indicates that the swimming area at Sandpoint could be reduced in size by 20-30% and be limited to 2 to 3 feet in depth.  The point near Leisure Bay already very shallow, will have limited water available for safe navigation, less than 3 ft extending nearly 200 feet into the lake.  The lakeshore near Rock Creek becomes very shallow extending well into the lake and encompassing the entire D-River.  Water levels will be safe for boating in much of the western end of the lake as well as the Marina lobe but with 4 to 6 feet in depth, propeller turbulence will keep bottom settlement suspended all summer long.  In addition, it appears every canal as well as Horseshoe Bay will be all but empty as the water level reaches its lowest point.  For more information on how these measurements were calculated read the Updated Bathymetry and Paleolimnology of Devils Lake

Leave a comment

Filed under DLWID, Lake Level

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s