WATONGA, Okla. (KFOR) – Lake Watonga at Roman Nose State Park has receded greatly and there is no date on when it will be refilled.
The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife oversees the repairs and refills.
The reason the water level has gone done is because of a leak in the dam.
“It’s been there for decades, so dams don’t last forever,” said Micah Holmes, spokesman for the OK Department of Wildlife. “They require maintenance.”
A KFOR viewer emailed the station wanted to know why it has taken over a year and half for the repair to be fixed.
“Lake Watonga was drained in April 2021 and forgotten about,” said the viewer.
Holmes said the lake is not forgotten.
“Our main concern is public safety,” said the spokesman.
Flying over the lake in MacIntyre Law Chopper 4, vegetation that usually rests under the water is clearly visible and a dock that leads out to the water is completely surrounded dry land.
Holmes was not able to give an exact date on when the dam will be fixed and when the lake will be refilled.
But he did confirm that the department is in the process of getting engineers out to find a safe, long-term solution.
“We did hope that it would be done sooner, but this is not something we’re going to try to rush into and put a patch on something that needs a full scale repair,” said Holmes.
People regularly use the lake to fish for trout. The lake has been closed for fishing, but Holmes said the trout have been relocated to Boecher Lake a few hundred yards away.