Inks Dam and Inks Lake

Small dam creates 777-acre lake, has no floodgates

Inks Dam

​Inks Dam, owned by LCRA, creates Inks Lake.

Before Buchanan Dam was completed, LCRA began work three miles downstream on this smaller dam so the two could work in tandem.

Inks Dam, constructed from 1936 to 1938, has no floodgates, and the power plant is the smallest in the Highland Lakes chain. A small amount of water can be released through hydroelectric generation, but the bulk of floodwaters pass over an uncontrolled spillway.

The lake and dam are named for Roy B. Inks, one of the original directors on the LCRA Board.

For information about parks on Inks Lake, see map of parks and recreation areas.

Also see Inks Lake State Park.

​FYI: Inks Dam


Location: Llano County, 409 river miles from the Gulf of Mexico
When built: 1936 to 1938
Dam dimensions: 96.5 feet high, 1,547.5 feet long
Primary purpose: Hydroelectric power
Generating capacity: 13.8 megawatts
Spillway elevation: 888.3 feet above msl
Top of dam: 922 feet above msl
Floodgates: None
Discharge capacity: 3,400 cubic feet per second (cfs):

  • 1 turbine @ 3,400 cfs

Original name: Arnold Dam


Details on Inks Lake


Lake area: 777 acres
Elevation when full: 888 feet above mean sea level (msl)
Volume when full: 13,668 acre-feet
Historic high: 902.8 feet above msl on July 25, 1938
Historic low: 877.1 feet above msl on Dec. 6, 1983
Target operating range: 886.9 feet to 887.7 feet above msl
100-year flood level at dam: 901.7 feet above msl
Dimensions: 4.2 miles long, 3,000 feet at widest point