Lake Brownwood


Lake Brownwood is located eight miles north of City of Brownwood in Brown County, Texas, on Pecan Bayou, tributaries of Colorado River and impounded on both Pecan Bayou and its tributary, Jim Ned Creek. The Lake owned and operated by Brown County Water Improvement District #1 for water supply and recreational purposes. The State Board of Water Engineer issued Permit No. 1036 to the owner for construction of the reservoir on December 3, 1929. Construction of the dam began in 1930 and was completed in 1933. Deliberate impoundment of water started in July 1933. A survey of the watershed revealed that two years of normal rainfall were needed before the lake would fill, but on July 3, 1932, torrential rains caused Pecan Bayou and Jim Ned Creek to pour flooding waters into the lake, filling it to a level of 150,000 acre-feet. The dam was raised 20 feet, enlarged and reinforced in 1982 to an elevation of 1,470 feet above mean sea level. The uncontrolled emergency spillway is at the left of the dam with a crest elevation of 1,425 feet above mean sea level.

Lake Brownwood

According to TWDB 2013 survey, the Lake has a capacity of 131,530 acre feet and encompasses a surface area of 6,814 acres at conservation pool elevation, 1,425 feet above mean sea level (NAVD88). The dam controls a drainage area of about 1,535 square miles The USGS has a gage measuring the reservoir levels at the dam on the south-east side of the reservoir: USGS: 08143000.


Several public and private boat ramps are available around the lake. The Civilian Conservation Corps built a state park on Lake Brownwood; benches, camping, lodges and 6 miles of trails culminate in a historic limestone pavilion. In 1978, and more recently in 2014, the Brown County Water Improvement District 1 has made challenges to the Lake Coleman water purveyors claiming senior downstream water rights. The City of Coleman was releasing base flow required by permit and confirmed by the Texas Department of Water Resources, as reported by the Coleman County Chronicle, pages 1 & 5A.

Brownwood at Pecan Bayou is known to be a flood prone area with multiple high crest events. Some of them may be identified as high lake levels in the historic images. Most recently, reaching 1429 feet in May of 2016. Previously reaching 1429.9 ft in March of 1990 and as high as 1430.9 ft in May of 1957 and 1956.


  • Primary Purposes: Flood Management, Water Storage
  • Location: Brown County, Texas
  • Lake Capacity: 128,839 acre-feet
  • Full Elevation: 1,741 mean sea level (msl)
  • Historic High: 1,433 feet msl on Dec. 21, 1991
Dam Statistics
  • Spillway Elevation: 1,425 feet above msl
  • Top of Dam: 1,450 feet above msl
Current Conditions

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