High water has caused a delay in the opening of beaches

High water is having an impact on Mark Twain Lake. Right now the lake is 13 feet above its normal stage.

The reading on Thursday morning was 619.9. The normal level is 606.

Back on April 25th, the lake level was 627.5.

Because of the high water and the debris that was leftover at two of the public swimming beaches, the opening of those beaches will be delayed by a week.

Right now there's no access to the Spalding Beach swimming area because crews haven't had the opportunity to cleanup the debris and to set the swim lines and warning buoys.

Ben Sapp is with the Corps of Engineers and the Corp is responsible for making two of swimming areas are ready for the public.

"Being on a flood reservoir lake, it is something we have to contend with some years. Last year obviously wasn't as much of a problem and definitely not to this degree, but there is always prepping an area before it opens to the public," Sapp said.

Meanwhile over on Route J south of the dam, Kurt Meyer said his Clarence Cannon Dam General Store is ready for the season. He said they've been in business since the lake opened almost 30 years ago. His business is open year round but they're ready for the summer.

"And of course the lake conditions affect the business also, we're going to have a pretty good year. We're kind of slow start because it's been cold and the lake has been up, but I think it's going to be pretty good from here on out," Meyer said.

Sapp said the Mark Twain Lake area attracted about two million visitors last year. The swimming areas brought in about 380,000 people in the three months they were open to the public. Sapp hopes they can keep those numbers about the same for the 2013 season as well.

The beaches and the secondary boat ramps are scheduled to be open by Friday, May 24th.