Lake Limestone, located on the upper Navasota River in Limestone, Robertson and Leon Counties, is a water supply reservoir built by the Brazos River Authority in 1978. The project was authorized through a permit issued by the State of Texas in 1974.
Construction of the reservoir was made possible through the sale of water to Texas Electric Utilities for "cooling water" to be used by their lignite-burning electric plants in the area.
Water from the lake is supplied for similar use at a NRG steam-electric plant just east of the lake and a Texas Municipal Power Agency power plant located near the Navasota River 50 miles downstream.
When full, the lake covers a surface area of 12,680 acres and holds back 225,440 acre feet or 73.5 billion gallons of water.
I include the above information so you can understand a little bit about my family's farm. You see the long skinny arm at the north end of the lake? That goes right across the middle of the farm. And while my family has owned the land for generations, and was understandably opposed to the creation of the lake, (since we now have to travel over 15 miles to reach our land on the other side) we have grown to appreciate its' beauty and enjoy the opportunities it affords.
Problem is, when there is a drought and you're missing millions of gallons of the water that typically make the lake a beautiful place, you sometimes have this...
That's The Chief and Weegie checking things out when we arrived there Friday afternoon. Not only does a lack of water make things look sad and dismal, but it also creates all kind of issues for landowners. Especially for those who run cattle on their land.
If you look closely, you can see a fence that ends at the stump that is directly in the center of the photo. Typically, that stump is well out in the lake, therefore, the cattle can't get around it and onto the neighboring land. The receding water, though, exposes more and more land until eventually the cattle can just walk around the end of the fence and wander pell-mell , willy-nilly all over the county.
Which, as you can guess, we really like to avoid.
So it was just shortly after I baked and we enjoyed some lovely from scratch Blueberry Muffins on Saturday Morning,
that The Chief announced that we needed to go extend the fence.
He likes to announce things like that.
And while I really didn't have any other plans for the morning (at least none that didn't include more Blueberry Muffins and The Food Network) I wasn't necessarily prepared to go out in the cold and fix fence.
And when I use the words 'I' and 'fix fence' in the same sentence I feel like I'm being just a tad deceptive. I'm pretty much the pack mule. The 'Carrier of the Fencing Repair Supplies' or you could also probably call me 'The Chief's fetch girl'.
Let's Git 'er Done.
The tricky part of fence repair is usually not the actual repair,
1. getting the equipment to the site, and
2. the devil's barbed wire.
We drove the Mule with all of the supplies as close as we could get, but still had to manuever through this.
And while I really wanted to document with photographs the whole process of getting the stuff through this sticky thicket, The Chief politely suggested that I put the camera away and HELP.
Eventually we got everything where it needed to be. The Chief put on his waders to slog out into the mud to check out what he could 'tie' the extension of the fence onto.
For those of you not acquainted with "quicksand" I suggest you talk to Weegie...
The Weege is usually reluctant to let The Chief get even three or four feet away from him at the farm. He's afraid The Chief will hop in The Mule or into the tractor and he'll miss a ride.
But even The Weege had to turn back when his legs disappeared and he bottomed out not far away from where I was stationed with the supplies.
One of The Chief's most useful tools for fencing is the gold apparatus above. It's a splicer. You can use it to repair a spot in the fence that is broken, and he also uses a stretcher or "come along" to pull the wire taut. The barbed wire we used this time was a particularly heavy gauge (which means it's thick and heavy duty) and very difficult to handle.
But no matter what type of wire you use, the water will eventually corrode and rust it,
and it will be in need of repair or replacement AGAIN.
And while The Chief quickly and efficiently got the job done,
I took a few more pictures...
And spent quite a bit of time reassuring Weegie that the gunshots from the duck hunters on the opposite shore were not directed toward him.
He WAS NOT easily convinced.
Hope you enjoyed a little Farm Work!
Did you have an equally fun weekend?
P.S. I should add that the rains came (finally) Saturday night, and by the time we left to come home the area had received 2 1/2 blessed inches of rain!