Moses Lake water levels are reduced this week

Moses Lake is getting shallower with each passing day this week.

The Moses Lake Irrigation and Rehabilitation District reduces water levels in the lake each year for a variety of reasons.

District Board Chairman Bill Bailey said a primary focus of the reduction was flood control.

“The lake is jettisoned every year to provide a buffer for unusual wetness, which may not seem likely in a drought like the one we are experiencing, but it is still part of the practice.”

Water levels in Moses Lake will drop about five feet this week, which also helps control aquatic weeds and allows crews to conduct a thorough shoreline cleanup.

Bailey adds that the practice also helps keep the lake clean.

“When we drop the lake, it removes about a third of its total volume. Then in the spring, when we refill the lake, it is filled with water from the Columbia River. This helps clean the lake by providing l cool, cool water with lower phosphorus levels.

After the lake is partially drained, most of its remaining water freezes over during the winter months. However, the lake remains deep enough for fishing at its southern end.

The lake is usually lowered during the first week of November each year and filled in early spring.

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