History of Belton Lake

Belton Lake is located on the Leon River 16.7 miles upstream of the confluence of the Leon River and the Little River. It is in the northern part of Bell County, Texas about three miles north of the City of Belton and approximately eight miles west of the City of Temple, Texas. There is 136 miles of shoreline at conservation pool. The Lake area lies within Bell and Coryell Counties.  


Construction began January 1949 and was completed in 1954 with a conservation pool of 569.00 mean sea level (msl) of deliberate impoundment begining March 8, 1954. After the construction of Proctor Lake the conservation pool was raised at Belton Lake. The ultimate project conservation pool of 594.00 msl of deliberate impoundment began May 1, 1972. The conservation pool at Belton Lake remains 594.00 msl to this day.


Flood Control Act approved July 24, 1946 (PL 79.526) (HD 88/81/1) modified by Flood Control Act approved September 3, 1954 (PL 83-780) (HD 535/81/2).

Flood/Drought History

Maximum level reached 634.36 msl on March 6, 1992
Minimum level reached 582.78 msl on December 27, 1978 (since last pool rise May 2, 1972)


The project cost to build Belton Lake was $17,191,734.04.


The purpose of the dam is for flood damage reduction, water conservation, fish and wildlife habitat, and general recreation.

Other Pertinant Information:

The dam including the spillway is 5,524 feet long (including spillway and 418 foot dike). The dam is constructed of rolled earthfill.   At top of conservation pool, elevation 594.00, the lake covers 12,300 surface acres. The crest of the spillway is 631.00 msl. The top of the dam is 662.00 msl.