Keystone Lake A Popular Memorial Day Destination

Monday, May 25th 2009, 5:51 pm
By: News On 6

By Tara Vreeland, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- State lakes are a popular destination during the Memorial Day weekend. The threat of showers hasn't slowed traffic at Keystone Lake and even higher gas prices aren't slowing down boaters.

The Memorial Day weekend is notorious for rainy weather in Tulsa. Rain is something lake goers were wary of this year since the lake levels have already been so high.

"My daughter decided that it would be a lot of fun to come out to the lake, so we packed everybody up and headed up to Tulsa," said Jerry Hietpas of Oklahoma City.

Memorial Day on Keystone Lake has been a breeze with sunshine spotted with rain showers.

"I think between the weather and reasonable gas prices, it's been a good weekend," said Justin Hershberger, Pier 51 Marina manager.

Gas prices have jumped in the past two weeks, but they are well below what they were last year.

Filling up at the dock isn't too bad either at $2.39 a gallon.

"Numbers wise, I think we've seen an upturn this year as far as business here at the marina," said Hershberger.

"In years past, we've actually had to shuttle people back and forth to their boats over to the docks because the water's been so high. We got lucky this year it wasn't up in the parking lot," said Scott Laughlin, of Pier 51 Marina.

Twenty-two straight days of rain filled the lake past the brim, but for the past week, water has been steadily flowing out of the dam.

"On average, it's been dropping anywhere from a foot to eight inches a day," said Laughlin.

"They're higher, but with this dry spell we've been having, they're dropping fairly quickly so that's good. Conditions are improving," said Hershberger.

There's not too much to complain about this Memorial Day weekend.

"The weather is absolutely beautiful. This is Oklahoma. It could change in 10 minutes," said Hietpas.

The water level at Keystone Lake is still 10 feet above normal. The flood gates are open and the water is steadily being let out.