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Hot and dry weather pattern causes a stink at Sunset Lake

With little to no rainfall, visitors at Sunset Lake in Portland may notice an odor issue.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — While the steady sunny, summer days can make for a good day at the beach or pool, it's causing a bit of a stink for some other water spots.

The water ecosystem at Sunset Lake in Portland is reaping the impacts of little-to-no rainfall season.

"We're now in a very dry to extremely dry situation and been there for about six months. And so, it's both a heat and a soil dryness situation," said Kenneth Banks, Director of Public Works for the City of Portland.

He adds, it is a combination of causes that ultimately lead to a distinct odor.

"A lot of mud from just materials that have been in there for quite some time, as well as decaying vegetative matter and even small fish can get trapped in these pools and then the tide goes out, the pools get isolated," Banks said.

In a long period of no significant rainfall to keep the underlying soils moist, Banks said it becomes a persistent issue.

"It's just constantly getting recharged with the tide and then that area evaporates and we're right back to where we were," Banks said.

While some areas of the lake may not smell so bad, others of smaller capacity and more stagnant certainly can. 

"The lake is there for our citizens and people in the surrounding areas to enjoy and no reason not to do it. Just understand that this is a natural pattern. We're certainly keeping an eye on it. And we don't recommend that anyone do anything different other than to just exercise those precautions to not impact habitat," Banks said.

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