Lake Waxahachie, Texas, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - Southwest - Texas - Prairies and Lakes -

Also known as:  Waxahachie Lake

One of many reservoirs in the Texas Prairies and Lakes Region, Lake Waxahachie was constructed to provide a municipal water supply to the nearby City of Waxahachie. Small by reservoir standards, the 656-acre reservoir still manages to provide plenty of recreational opportunities to area residents and visitors. An all-sports lake, the reservoir is owned and managed by the City of Waxahachie, with numerous beautiful homes overlooking the inviting water. Residents often have boathouses built over the water and lovely views from the limestone cliffs along the shore.

The South Prong Dam impounds water from South Prong Creek, a tributary of the Trinity River. Soon after its construction in 1956, the City of Waxahachie developed three public access areas along the north shore. All three provide boat ramps, although some of them may not be serviceable during the frequent periods of low water levels. As is common in this part of Texas, prolonged dry spells can reduce creeks to a mere trickle-creeks that can become rushing torrents during sudden rainstorms. The third public boat ramp can handle low water level launches, but there is little else provided except parking at that location. Boat Dock Park near the dam and Spring Park provide restrooms, picnic tables and a swim area. Boat Dock Park also offers a children’s playground. Located less than five miles from downtown Waxahachie, the parks are a convenient spot to enjoy cooling breezes while picnicking in the shade. Jetti Park has shore fishing and a boat ramp only. There is no marina on the lake.

All types of watercraft are permitted on Lake Waxahachie, including jet skis. It’s the perfect lake for lazy pontooning, or exploring the many coves and arms that extend from the main watercourse by canoe or kayak. Some of the higher-end housing developments provide a pier and park area specifically for their members. Because the lake is only 30 miles from Dallas-Fort Worth, most of the homes are year-round residences and ideal for commuting. There is no camping along the 8-mile shoreline, but a US Army Corps of Engineers Campground is located a few miles away at Bardwell Lake. Few vacation rentals are found here, but the occasional private home may be rented on a short-term basis. There is no shortage of lodgings in nearby Waxahachie, with numerous hotels and bed & breakfasts throughout the area.

Fishing is good for a small residential reservoir. Some brush fish shelters are in place, and there are numerous weed beds along the shore that attract largemouth bass and crappie. Locals admit that the bass are not especially large, but that there are plenty of them and put up a good fight at the end of the line. Crappies also are often caught near the dam. In the past blue catfish and channel catfish were planted which appear to have taken hold and are now self-propagating. White bass are plentiful. A regular Texas fishing license is required, and Texas Parks and Wildlife occasionally place some special restrictions on which fish may be kept.

Real estate is more the drawing card to Lake Waxahachie than vacation lodgings. Home prices range from economical to high-end custom homes. With the City of Waxahachie five minutes to the north of the lake, one needn’t return to the larger metroplex for most daily needs and services. Waxahachie is an historic town with several areas worth exploring. The picture-perfect historic downtown area has been the set for numerous Hollywood films. The city has a section of old ‘shotgun’-style housing from the early 1900s, as well as the Gingerbread Trail, an annual tour of homes each June showcasing Queen Anne, Victorian, Gingerbread and Gothic Revival architectural styles.

A recreated Munster Mansion is a private residence but decorated to reflect the more famous focal points of the popular 1980’s television series. Tours are available. In October, the Screams Halloween Theme Park is open for blood chilling thrills and frights. Open weekends April through Memorial Day, the Scarborough Renaissance Festival recreates a 16th century English village complete with over 200 shops, 20 entertainment stages, food, handicrafts and human-powered rides. Waxahachie also has theaters for the perfuming arts, an art museum, a water park and the ever popular, four mile Waxahachie Creek Hike and Bike Trail that wanders alongside its namesake creek through the middle of town. With all of these entertaining choices, many residents at Lake Waxahachie return home from Dallas or Fort Worth at the end of the week and seldom venture back into the big city until Monday morning.

There are plenty of good excuses to spend a vacation near Lake Waxahachie, even if you stay at a hotel in the city. The fishermen in the family can head on down to the lake for fishing, while the kids swim and enjoy exploring. Bring a picnic lunch or plan to stop and pick up your favorite take-out in Waxahachie to eat in the shade. You can be back for a deluxe dinner at one of the city’s restaurants, followed by the theater or a local symphony performance. Once you see just how many things there are to do here in the area, you may be looking for real estate in the near future.

Things to do at Lake Waxahachie

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Jet Skiing
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Museum
  • Playground

Fish species found at Lake Waxahachie

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Blue Catfish
  • Catfish
  • Channel Catfish
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • White Bass

Lake Waxahachie Photo Gallery

Lake Waxahachie Statistics & Helpful Links

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Trophic State | LakeLubbers

Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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Completion Year | LakeLubbers

This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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Water Volume | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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Average Depth | LakeLubbers

This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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Surface Area | LakeLubbers

This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

"Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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Lake Type | LakeLubbers

There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

- A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

- A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

- A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

"Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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