Published: 2013-07-16 15:51:00
Updated: 2013-07-16 18:52:59
Posted July 16, 2013
In the heat of summer, in the middle of July, a dip in the lake can seem like the perfect antidote. But some who planned to spend warm nights at a Kerr Lake campsite have found that Mother Nature got there first.
By Sunday, more than 10 percent of the available spaces – 75 of 600 campsites – were flooded. Lake levels have been running above normal for more than a month, and the lake was about five feet above normal on Monday.
"This is our busiest time of the year, so it's a greater impact to our visitors," said Park Superintendent Bryce Fleming.
Some campers had already settled in Friday when they were asked to move to higher ground. By Sunday morning, those spots were inundated.
"We hate to have to make that call to anybody that's got a reservation," Fleming said. He's seen 40 cancellations so far this season.
Seaton Blackwood, at Kerr Lake on vacation with his girlfriend's family, said water had risen to cover the area they expected would be a beach.
"We're just taking full advantage of all this water," he said. "Tubing, riding the boat, wakeboarding, fishing."
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages flow to and from the lake, releasing water downstream to lower lake levels when necessary. They said Tuesday that they expect the campsites to be accessible by the weekend.
Blackwood doesn't mind that a little bit more water and fewer guests were present during his vacation week.
"I didn't want to leave. I'd have to go back to work if I did," he said.