Lake Of The Ozarks Water Level Lower Than Normal? Sadly, Yes. Why?
For any of you who have been to the Lake of the Ozarks, it is a wonderful tourist location and it has so many amazing places to check out as well as the actual lake, of course. There will be an upcoming tourist oasis that will be built there in the near future and you can read about that HERE if you missed the story.
If you happen to live there, know someone who does, or plan to check out the Lake before the winter hits, you might notice what many of the residents have noticed. You are seeing a bit more of the shoreline than in years past. It is November now, but the shoreline is as low as it normally is in January.
Lake of the Ozarks homeowners have been noticing more shoreline exposed this autumn; some have complained on local social media groups that their plans for a fall outing were grounded, thanks to lower-than-normal Lake levels. While boaters in shallow coves are accustomed to seeing their dock bumping the Lake floor in the dead of winter — when Ameren draws the Lake down approximately six feet from its summer "full pool" high point — they aren't used to the water level being so low so soon.
The Lake of the Ozarks water level is normally measured from Bagnell Dam. It was at 657 feet of elevation above sea level. In the past years around this time, the levels have been higher. You can click HERE for an updated hourly level.
2021 - 658.9
2020 - 658.4
2019 - 659
2018 - 658.5
You can click HERE for a guide courtesy of Ameren of the past year. Now, why might it be lower? The drought. We may not have thought about it but in late-September and pretty much all of October, Missouri was in a D-2 Severe Drought. Recent heavy rains have alleviated that for much of Missouri (the Lake area is now in D0 – D1 conditions), but during that same time parts of Kansas were — and still are — in a D-4 Exceptional Drought.
This may or may not be a concern to you, but it was an interesting fact that may continue to be affecting the lake as climate change continues to be an issue. If you ever wanted to relocate there to take advantage of the lake, this would be something of concern that you should know about.