Ongoing drought frustrates lake goers, leads to boat ramp closure at Lake Afton

The water levels at Lake Afton. Those who work here at the park say the water is four-and-a-half fee lower than where it needs to be.
Published: Jun. 7, 2023 at 4:08 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan. (KWCH) - While recent rains are a welcome sight, it’s not been enough for much of Kansas as problems with extreme drought persist. Low water levels at Lake Afton prompted the closure of a boat ramp.

Wednesday, 12 News spoke with people who work at the lake about what it will take for the ramp to reopen.

The low water levels are leading to some unwanted sightings for lake goers.

“Found a nest that had some snakes in it that was hidden by a rock, that if the water line would’ve been where it was at, we probably wouldn’t have seen any of that,” Lake Afton visitor Jessica Bowman said.

Fishing at Lake Afton Wednesday, Teddie Winters and David Butler noticed the deteriorating conditions from the drought.

They said the drought has impacted their summer fun as water levels at the lake are the lowest they’ve seen in years.

“We could probably use an inch or two (of rain) every week for six months, easily. It’s going to be two or three years before these lakes get back up to where they’re supposed to be,” Butler said.

With Lake Afton’s boat ramp closed, for now, boating on the lake is on hold.

Winters said he bought a boat last year and hasn’t yet been able to take it out on the water because of the drought.

Once boating returns to Lake Afton, lake goers said they’ll remain cautious.

“When it comes to boating, I would say with the receding water lines, you’re going to hit rocks or sticks more often,” Bowman said.