Smith Mountain Lake residents came out in force Wednesday night, and they wanted answers about why the lake's level is so low.
It was a packed house at Trinity Ecumenical Church tonight -- but not for worship --- it was filled with Smith Mountain Lake residents concerned about the lake's current level.
Right now, the lake's elevation is just around 790 feet. It's normal elevation is 795 feet, and business owners here are feeling the pinch.
"Generally we would expect more boats coming in or more people utilizing the marina but because of the low water levels, it's not as high as we expected,” said Russell Johnson of the Smith Mountain Lake Association.
Johnson says if residents are looking to place blame, look to Mother Nature.
"We're in a drought; we've been in a drought before. Droughts come, droughts go. So one of the things we have to understand is clarifying misinformation,” Johnson said.
Misinformation, like other agencies or energy providers, are to blame for the diminishing levels.
A special variance can help reduce the amount of water lost, but the current variance can't be changed until 2015. Lake activists are getting ready.
Residents we spoke to say they were happy to get clarification of why the levels are dwindling.
More informational meetings are planned for the future.
The water level at Smith Mountain Lake is dangerously low and it is causing a lot of problems.
People who live around the lake are gathering to talk about the issue Wednesday night.
The meeting is a chance for people to learn facts about what's causing the lower water level and what they can do to improve the situation.
On a beautiful, sunny day Smith Mountain Lake is normally full of boats.
On Wednesday there was barely one in sight. The lake level is too low.
"I haven't seen it this low since 2001,” Bridgewater Marina owner Roy Enslow said.
Enslow has been renting out more boats lately, because there's not enough water at private docks for people to put in their own vessels.
"We had a couple from New Jersey that came down with their two small children,” Enslow said. "And they weren't able to go out on the lake because they couldn't get their boat out of the lift."
The difference is noticeable on the shoreline.