Thursday, August 9, 2012

Lake Update and Race Announcement

The 2nd Annual Mountain Top Trot trail run event will be on Saturday, September 29th at Mountain Lake!! Let's hope the weather is a bit more on the "fair" side this year (compared to the snow flurries last year on Oct. 1!). This year we'll have both a 5-mile and 10-mile race, and raffle prize drawing for all registered participants!! The event website and information is here: If you are interested in volunteering before or during the race, please let us know! It'll be super fun, and volunteers will get free technical race t-shirts and yummy chili and cornbread lunch! Email Jess at

Lake Update

Lake level photo taken July 31, 2012

The lake is currently receding, a trend observed over the past 3 seasons at Mountain Lake. The water level peaked in late July and has been increasing receding since. This time of year there are several factors that decrease the amount of water retained in the lake bed: increased rate of evaporation from the lake due to higher temperatures; an overall lack of precipitation; and an increase in uptake of groundwater by trees and vegetation, meaning less inflow of water to the lake bed. High-altitude divers have been exploring the lake obtain more information and visuals of the dynamics of the lake bed floor. The link below will show you some really neat images that the divers and researchers have gathered.

PDF File with images from current study

The first two images identify significant features of the lake bed including the major depressions (wherein lie many "piping holes" or actual pin-point locations of outflow of water). As noted in the title, these images are from October 2011, the second most recent occurrence of the lake going extremely low (puddle status). The third and fourth pictures are sonar images created while boating on the water's surface last August, 2011. The lake is currently at a lower level now (Aug 8, 2012) than it was on August 16, 2011. The last two images are still shots from a video taken by divers during a dive on July 9, 2012. You can actually see the sediment flow down in to the hole when the diver stirs up the sediment next to the "pipe". We plan to share the video once the researchers have edited it, along with some of the more comprehensive summaries of the hard work they've been up to! 

Stay tuned to the MLC blog for the latest news on the unique lake geology, studies, and discoveries!