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Bathymetric and supporting data for Beaver Lake near Rogers, Arkansas, 2018

December 18, 2019

Beaver Lake was constructed in 1966 on the White River in the northwest corner of Arkansas for flood control, hydroelectric power, public water supply, and recreation. The surface area of Beaver Lake is about 27,900 acres and approximately 449 miles of shoreline are at the conservation pool level (1,120 feet above the North American Vertical Datum of 1988). Sedimentation in reservoirs can result in reduced water storage capacity and a reduction in usable aquatic habitat. Therefore, accurate and up-to-date estimates of reservoir water capacity are important for managing pool levels, power generation, water supply, recreation, and downstream aquatic habitat. Many of the lakes operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are periodically surveyed to monitor bathymetric changes that affect water capacity. In October 2018, the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, completed one such survey of Beaver Lake using a multibeam echosounder. The echosounder data was combined with light detection and ranging (lidar) data to prepare a bathymetric map and a surface area and capacity table.

Collection of bathymetric data in October 2018 at Beaver Lake near Rogers, Arkansas, used a marine-based mobile mapping unit that operates with several components: a multibeam echosounder (MBES) unit, an inertial navigation system (INS), and a data acquisition computer. Bathymetric data were collected using the MBES unit in longitudinal transects to provide complete coverage of the lake. The MBES was tilted in some areas to improve data collection along the shoreline, in coves, and in areas that are shallower than 2.5 meters deep (the practical limit of reasonable and safe data collection with the MBES). Two bathymetric datasets collected during the October 2018 survey include the gridded bathymetric point data ( computed on a 3.28-foot (1-meter) grid using the Combined Uncertainty and Bathymetry Estimator (CUBE) method, and the bathymetric quality-assurance dataset ( The gridded point data used to create the bathymetric surface ( was quality-assured with data from 9 selected resurvey areas ( to test the accuracy of the gridded bathymetric point data. The data are provided as comma delimited text files that have been compressed into zip archives.

The shoreline was created from bare-earth lidar resampled to a 3.28-foot (1-meter) grid spacing. A contour line representing the flood pool elevation of 1,135 feet was generated from the gridded data. The data are provided in the Environmental Systems Research Institute shapefile format and have the common root name of BeaverLake2018_1135-ft. All files in the shapefile group must be retrieved to be useable.

Publication Year 2019
Title Bathymetric and supporting data for Beaver Lake near Rogers, Arkansas, 2018
DOI 10.5066/P91PLLGV
Authors Richard J Huizinga, Jarrett T. Ellis, Joseph M Richards, Jessica Z LeRoy
Product Type Data Release
Record Source USGS Digital Object Identifier Catalog
USGS Organization Central Midwest Water Science Center