Aerial footage shows a nearly dry Medina Lake as water level drops below 6% capacity

Reservoir is 5.9% full

SAN ANTONIO – Abandoned pontoon boats and dry docks have taken the place of swimmers, water skiers and wakeboarders on Medina Lake, as the water level continues to drop.

Water Data for Texas reports that the reservoir is 5.9% full on Wednesday — and that number has been steadily declining due to a multi-year drought.

The effects were evident this week when Sky 12 captured aerial footage of the reservoir. Large portions of the lake are bone dry, while some areas that do have water are pierced by the trees below.

See the footage in the video player above.

The mean water level is currently 983 feet, compared to 1,016 feet a year ago, when it was 25% full.

The reservoir was constructed in the early 1910s to be used by farmers for irrigation. Because of that, it’s known to have fluctuations in its water level.

For example, from 2011 to 2013, the reservoir reached as low as 3% capacity. Due to the Blanco River floods of 2015, the lake — and the aquifer — were able to recover.

KSAT meteorologist Justin Horne previously reported that droughts followed by historic floods have been a pattern for South Texas.

Horne reported that an extended dry La Nina is winding down this year, meaning El Nino is expected to bring rainy and damp conditions to South Texas. Time will tell how that will affect Medina Lake.

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About the Author

Rebecca Salinas is an award-winning digital journalist who joined KSAT in 2019. She reports on a variety of topics for KSAT 12 News.

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