Wolf Creek Dam increasing releases to drawdown Lake Cumberland

Wolf Creek Dam at Lake Cumberland

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVQ) – Plans are in the works to bring the water level down at Lake Cumberland.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District plans to increase releases at Wolf Creek Dam in Jamestown, Kentucky as soon as conditions allow.

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In preparation for the increase, Corps of Engineers officials say they are working with local officials to install a “Hesco” temporary flood wall on River View Road just downstream of the dam where water backs up from the Cumberland River into Little Indian Creek and inundates this remote country road. When the water releases reach about 30,000 cfs the roadway becomes impassable, blocking public access to about 20 parcels of land and about 30 structures.

The Corps of Engineers says it is working with local authorities to try and keep the roadway open for landowners as it increases releases at the dam.

The Nashville District plans to have the temporary flood wall in place before increasing releases at Wolf Creek Dam in order to keep the roadway accessible.

The current elevation at Lake Cumberland is the highest observed since April 25, 1998 when the pool crested at 742.44 feet. The pool of record is 751.69 set in May 1984.

In 2019 inflows are averaging 33,270 cfs and the lake has risen 19 feet. Although the current elevation of the lake is 736.7 feet, only 34.4 percent of the flood control pool is currently being utilized.

Officials say the Nashville District is releasing as much water as downstream conditions allow in an effort to regain storage in the reservoir.