Where’d the Water Go?

August 22, 2011Katie

You may have noticed that this summer Dishin and Dishes has been missing something.

Lake pictures.

We love to boat, and are blessed with several lakes here in the City, which means within 10 minutes of hooking up our boat, we are backing it into Lake Hefner.  You may remember reading about how we love to head across the lake and pull up to the courtesy docks to eat at one of our East Wharf restaurants.

Sunday we dined at one of the restaurants – Hefner Grill for brunch (post coming next!).  Let me show you why you haven’t seen many lake pictures from us.

This is the view out of the window while we ate.

Not the prettiest view you say? What? You don’t think looking at a red dirt beach is special?

See, the thing is, that beach didn’t use to be there.  The lake water used to come right up to those rocks and it was pretty.  Our water levels are down so low, “beaches” have appeared all over the lake where they’re not supposed to be.

This is in front of Hefner Grill.

This is our sweet little lighthouse complete with a new sandbar.

You can see how far the water has gone down by the red staining on the rocks – we figure at least 10 feet.  And that’s after four feet of water was piped in from Canton lake.  So if you took another four feet away, it’d be really bad.

You can see more of this in the small cove that we usually pull into to park at the courtesy docks to walk up to the restaurants.

See those empty spaces to the far left in the photo above?  Those are the East Wharf courtesy slips that we usually park at.  All those to the right are paid slips that people own. There is a gate that separates the loaded folks from those of us who just come ocasionally.  And many of those boats? They never move.  we figure if you sold all the graveyard sailboats on Lake Hefner, you could feed the hungry in our city for many years.

But also note the yellow police tape around those courtesy slips?

They have pulled up all the tiles off of the walkways around them and taped them off so no one can park there.

This is what they look like normally.

That’s a scene from last year with our good friends Rick and Nancy.  Ya know, back when there was water in the lake.

Needless to say, we’re a tad bit nervous about taking the boat out, especially when the Hefner Grill manager told us numerous stories about watching people run aground with their boats in front of the restaurant.  There are so many sandbars around and low places, our depth finder is constantly beeping.

This drought is really hurting our landscaping, our lakes…

And my dining experiences!

I hope we have a nice long fall before freezing hits. I feel deprived of my boat time!



  • Tammy H

    August 22, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    I pray for rain for everyone who is feeling the devestation of drouhgt. I hope you can boat again.
  • Fran Johnstonbaugh

    August 22, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    Shocked,. No idea it was that low out there. Left Denis high and dry once when water skiing and we hit a sand bar. We bent the rudder and after picking up Denis, we limped back to the dock.

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