Volumetric Surveys of the Highland Lakes | LCRA Volumetric Surveys of the Highland Lakes | LCRA


Volumetric Surveys of the Highland Lakes

As a best practice, LCRA periodically performs volumetric surveys of the Highland Lakes to provide updated information for water resources planning and flood operations. LCRA contracted with the Texas Water Development Board for the latest surveys of lakes Buchanan and Travis.

The TWDB Lake Buchanan volumetric survey published in 2020 determined the lake has a reservoir capacity of 880,356 acre-feet and encompasses 22,452 acres at its conservation pool elevation of 1,020 feet above mean sea level (feet msl). The previous survey completed in 2006 determined Lake Buchanan encompassed 22,017 acres. The 2020 survey defined the lake as having a slightly larger area than the 2006 survey, resulting in the conservation storage increasing.

The TWDB Lake Travis volumetric survey published in 2021 determined the lake has a reservoir capacity of 1,115,076 acre-feet and encompasses 19,044 acres at its conservation pool elevation of 681 feet msl. The previous survey completed in 2008 determined Lake Travis encompassed 19,297 acres. The 2021 volumetric survey determined the flood pool at Lake Travis is now 776,062 acre-feet.

Lake Buchanan
Storage at
1,020 feet msl
Lake Travis
Storage at
681 feet msl
Combined Storage
when Full
2020/2021 Survey Conservation Storage 880,356 1,115,076 1,995,432
2006/2008 Survey Conservation Storage ​875,588 ​1,134,956 2,010,544
​Percent Change in Storage ​+0.54% ​-1.75% -0.75%

Units in acre-feet.

TWDB advises that comparison of volumetric surveys to estimate changes in area and capacity due to sedimentation should be done with caution because of differences in past and present survey methodologies

LCRA began using the updated values on May 27, 2021.


RESOURCES