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Fall 2011 Without Color in the Texas Hill Country
Lake ConditionsClick thumbnail to view full-size
The Central Texas area and most of the State are suffering from a drought which has left local lakes under forty percent full. The ground is hard and dry. Trees across the area are suffering and many trees have died because of summer temperatures of 112 degrees. The hot winds have been blowing strong for several months. The Gulf moisture has evaded the area because of a high pressure system camped over the State.
The islands in Lake Travis have emerged. Once covered by water, they have risen to reduce the size of the lake considerably. The inlets of Lake Travis are dried up with excessive wild grasses emerging from the dredged areas of the waterways. Docks that once sat in lake waters to house boats, sit abandoned on dry, rocky ground, far from the embrace of any water. Beautiful homes sit high above the arid scenes with views that once enjoyed the blue waters and plentiful boaters. Though Lake Travis is not a constant level lake, it is truely suffering from the lack of water supply.
Rain in FallClick thumbnail to view full-size
Much Needed Rain
A month ago, the Texas Hill Country received a measurable rain of several inches. Grass became green again and the trees perked up as small green leaves began to emerge amongst the branches. During this past month, the hot winds have blown and the ground has grown dry once again.
When it rained a month ago, we all sighed in relief. Day after day of hot sun and dry winds grew tiresome. Very few clouds appeared on those hot summer days. A gray, wet day was a welcome relief. The soaking rains washed the dust and dirt off of roads, cars, and even roofs that had grown filthy with the layers of dry dust.
Two days ago, Sunday, November 6, we received some drizzle. The day was gray and somehow seemed darker with the Fall time change. Monday produced more drizzle and remained mostly cloudy. Today was rainy due to the arrival of a Northern cold front. The stronger rain showers produced a few puddles here and there. Many of us breathed a welcome sigh of relief with an earnest plea for more rain.
Information on Water
Fall 2011 - Where Does That Leave Us?
We have no Fall color. The dried leaves from dead trees stand out against the slightly green backdrop of fellow trees. There is a dark orange color pervading. Previous years have produced beautiful color in the trees due to rains at the right time.
Another cold front came through today and it will produce more cool, dry weather. We will keep our eyes open for that next Northern front and pray for a collision with some Gulf moisture to produce even more relief for our area. This hurricane season has not provided the necessary and hoped for rain this year. We have just a few more weeks of possible hurricanes in this year's season. It doesn't seem right to pray for a hurricane, but I imagine some people are doing just that.