Lake Tyler (Neches River Basin) | Texas Water Development Board

Lake Tyler (Neches River Basin)

Lake Tyler is unique in that it is really two lakes (the west and the east), connected later on by a canal, to form one system.  Whitehouse Dam was built on Prairie Creek and created the original Lake Tyler (on the west).  Mud Creek Dam was subsequently built on Mud Creek to form Lake Tyler East.  The Prairie Creek enters the Mud Creek which is the head water of the Angelina River, a tributary of the Neches River.  On May 29, 1968, the two lakes were connected via canal to form one lake known today as "Lake Tyler."

Lake Tyler is owned and operated by the City of Tyler and is located about eight miles southeast of Tyler in Smith County.  On March 25, 1945, Permit No. 1435 was issued by the State Board of Water Engineers to the City of Tyler authorizing a dam and impoundment on Prairie Creek known as Lake Tyler (Whitehouse Dam) for municipal, domestic and industrial purposes.  On October 1, 1956, the Board of Water Engineers issued Permit No. 1843 to the City of Tyler, giving the authorization for the construction of Mud Creek Dam to create another reservoir (Lake Tyler East).

The water rights to the two reservoirs were also combined at this time, since both permits were granted to the City of Tyler.  Construction for Whitehouse Dam began April 30, 1948 and was completed on May 13, 1949.  Deliberate impoundment began January 8, 1949. Construction of the Mud Creek Dam began on February 11, 1966.  Deliberate impoundment of water started November 22, 1966 and the dam was completed in January of 1967.  Total drainage area is approximately 107 square miles. The top of the dams ranges 390 to 391.5 feet above mean sea level. There are two uncontrolled spillways located separately at each dam. The one on Whitehouse Dam is a type of concrete chute of 200 feet in length, and the other one on Mud Creek Dam is a type of concrete weir of 300 feet in length. The crests of these spillways are at the same elevation, 375.38 feet above mean sea level. According to the volumetric survey by TWDB in 2013, at the conservation pool elevation of 375.38 feet above mean sea level, the lake has a storage capacity of 77,284 acre-feet encompassing a surface area of 4,714 acres.

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