Moving to Austin? You may start to wonder what everyone is talking about when they mention our lakes because all you see is a river. Prior topics from this series on things to know if you’re a new resident to Central Texas can be read here.
River or Lake?
What do Lake Travis, Lake Austin, and Lady Bird Lake have in common? They are all part of the Colorado River. Few people refer to any of these water bodies as the Colorado River, though. Each of the lakes is created because of a series of dams along the Colorado that were built in the 1930s and 1940s primarily for flood control. The Mansfield Dam is the largest dam and creates Lake Travis which is the main reservoir of water in the Austin area providing our drinking water and plenty of recreation. This lake rises and falls depending upon the amount of rain we have. Lake Austin is located between the Mansfield Dam and Tom Miller Dam. It remains at a constant level and looks just like a river. Lady Bird Lake is between Tom Miller Dam and Longhorn Dam. Formerly known as Town Lake, this is the body of water that is adjacent to downtown. It also is a constant level lake and looks like a river. These three lakes are the last three of seven in the Highland Lakes chain that starts over 50 miles northwest of Austin. There is so much more information available at the LCRA website.