Low water level forces closure of Anderson Lake

San Jose residents Tom Howden and Mark and Laura Bendixen board Mark's boat before spending the morning on Anderson Lake Saturday, May 16.

Recreational boaters hoping to get on the local waterways one more time this summer got an unexpected and unwanted surprise this week as Anderson Lake County Park was officially closed to all vessels.

“Due to the projected lowering water levels, Anderson Reservoir will be closed to all vessels effective Monday, August 17,” reads the announcement on the Santa Clara County Parks & Recreation Department website. That notice was posted Wednesday, Aug. 12.

A ruptured water pipe near Casa de Fruta on Aug. 1 caused the shutdown of a pipeline from San Luis Reservoir, the county’s main water supply to its water treatment plants, according to Santa Clara Valley Water District spokesman Marty Grimes.

“We’ve been using Anderson Reservoir to feed our treatment plans at a much earlier time than we thought we were going to,” Grimes said.

County parks had hoped to keep the reservoir open for recreational boat use through Labor Day, but the water was dropping so fast and boats could not be launched based on the water level projections, Grimes added.

If the water level reaches around 40,000 acre feet, then boats can’t be safely launched.

Before rupturing, the pipe had been transporting water from San Luis Reservoir to the county’s three water treatment plants. When it was shut down earlier this month, the water district began using water from Anderson instead.

Repairs to the busted pipe are expected to be complete by Sept 3, Grimes said.

Lexington Reservoir in Los Gatos is also closed due to low water level, according to the county parks site.

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