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This publication is issued by the Oklahoma Conservation Commission, in cooperation with the USDA
Natural Resources Conservation Service, as authorized by Mike Thralls, executive director. Copies have
not been printed but are available through the agency website, http://conservation.ok.gov.
Wildhorse Creek Watershed Dam No. 22
Wildhorse Creek Watershed Dam No. 22, known as Lake Humphreys, was constructed in 1957 by the City of Duncan and the Stephens County Conservation District with the assistance of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Watershed Program. The dam was built for flood control, municipal water supply and recreation. It was the first multi-purpose dam build in the nation under the NRCS Watershed Program.
The lake is located eight miles northeast of Duncan. The dam is 63 feet in height and it creates a 349 surface acre lake. The City of Duncan paid for an additional 10,681 acre feet of water storage when the dam was constructed for municipal water and recreational uses.
Recreational facilities around the lake include three boat ramps, 44 plug-ins for camping, a pavilion, a sanitary dump station, a covered fish house, several fishing piers, and primitive camping areas.
The dam is one of 107 flood control dams in the watershed project (57 in Garvin County, 41 in Stephens County, 6 in Murray County and 3 in Carter County).
There was frequent flooding in the watershed
before the dams were constructed. Between 1923 and 1942 there were 23 major floods (flood waters covered more than one-half of the floodplain) and 57 smaller floods. This was an average of four flood events each year. Floods destroyed crops; killed livestock; damaged fences; washed out roads and bridges; and eroded the land depositing sediment in streams and rivers.
Conservation districts in the four counties and the Wildhorse Creek Flood Prevention Association requested assistance from NRCS in developing and implementing a watershed project to address the flooding, erosion and the need for water supply. The dams were constructed between 1949 and 1993.
Five dams in the watershed were designed as multipurpose structures to also provide municipal water and recreational areas (Duncan Lake, Clear Creek Lake, Lake Humphreys, and Lake Fuqua in Stephens County and Elmore City Lake in Garvin County).
The Wildhorse Creek Watershed Project is one of 129 projects in Oklahoma that have been planned and implemented by local people with assistance from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Oklahoma Conservation Commission.
2,107* NRCS-assisted flood control dams have been constructed in 61 Oklahoma counties. These watershed projects that also include thousands of conservation practices provide over $81 million in average annual benefits.
For additional information about watershed projects in the state visit the Oklahoma Conservation Commission website at: http://conservation.ok.gov or visit your local conservation district and NRCS office.
This is one of 2,107* examples of how local, state and federal government agencies have worked together to utilize the Natural Resources Conservation Service Watershed Program to address natural resource needs and improve the quality of life for thousands of Oklahomans.
Wildhorse Creek Watershed Project Benefits (107 Flood Control Dams)
Provides $5.4 million in average annual benefits from reduced flood damages
Provides flood protection for highways, bridges, county roads and railroads
Provides flood protection for over 600 farms and ranches
Impounded water in the lakes has created fish and wildlife habitat, waterfowl nesting areas and livestock water
Sedimentation is reduced by 503,000 tons annually
Lake Humphreys provides flood control, municipal water for the City of Duncan and recreational areas.
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