High water levels threaten Country Stampede

Posted by in TV Reports

Manhattan — Waters gush and splash the walls at the Tuttle Creek dam, intriguing many to check-out the unusually high levels at their feet.

Water levels are reaching a dangerous peak at Tuttle Creek State Park, but officially say it’s truly not something to worry about. The same happened last year, and we talked to Country Stampede attendees and many say the water can be a fun element to the week’s festivities.

“I’m not too worried about it,” says Luke Heller, who has attended Stampede for the past three years.

He says people make the most of the atmosphere.

“I think it was last year that a big storm, just a good mud wrestling time, you know.”

Tuttle Creek State Reservoir peaked at 23 feet last Saturday. Tuttle Creek Operations Manager Brian McNulty says staff has started to drain the excess water.

“No problems more than what we experience when we fluctuate the lake up like this,” McNulty says. “Of course, all the boat ramps on the lake are underwater so they’re not useable. Some of the campgrounds are partially inundated.”

Staff lowered the lake’s water level by 3 feet.

They expect water levels to be down, so Stampede attendees can enjoy the atmosphere. But with the lake continuing to drop, that can be dangerous, too.

“Even during the event, at an additional three or four feet, so new obstacles will be showing up out of the lake…submerged trees,” McNulty says.

But if another storm hits Manhattan, McNulty says boating might be off limits and even some camp grounds.

For more information about Country Stampede, go to www.countrystampede.com.

For up-to-date information about weather conditions at Tuttle Creek State Park, go to http://www.nwk.usace.army.mil/tc/