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Recent rains provide needed relief for area aquifers

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TWC News: Recent rains provide needed relief for area aquifers
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For most of Central Texas, a rainy September has helped to ease the ongoing drought and replenish water sources.

In Salado, Teresa Zinke’s shop sits on the shore of the Salado Creek, not far from its bubbling springs.

"People love to come out here and get a drink and sit and watch the water and relax," she said. "The Indians used it back in the 1800s. The stagecoach people that came through here used it, so it's been a part of Salado forever."

The springs are fed by the northern Edwards Aquifer and are protected by the Clearwater Underground Water Conservation District. The 2011 drought dropped the flow of water to just a trickle, but the rains last month have made a large difference.

“In that recharge area, we're seeing 91 to 92 percent of annual rainfall has occurred in the last 365 days from today," Dick Aaron with the Clearwater Underground Water Conservation said.

Last weekend, thanks to recent rains, the flow of the Saldo Springs more than doubled, according to Aaron.

“It’s a measure of the health of the aquifer,” Aaron said. "When the Edwards is healthy, the communities' economic future is healthy."

In the Barton Springs portion of the Edwards aquifer, the news is not as good. The Barton Springs Edwards Aquifer Conservation District says most of the recent rain missed the recharge zone that feeds the springs.

That part of the aquifer is still near drought stage and has not recovered from 2011.

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