Annual cleanup of Lake Travis being held on Sunday
AUSTIN, Texas - The view across Lake Travis Friday was crystal clear, but just below the surface it was a completely different scene. Entire sections are trashed.
Robert Weiss, with Lake Travis Scuba, provided video to FOX 7 from a recent dive he's made. He's come across some pretty surprising discoveries. "We find beer cans, solo cups, jello cups and lids, towels, hats cellphones apple watches, money liquor, yeti cups," said Weiss.
Weiss is part of the Colorado River Alliance Annual Lake Travis clean up.
More than a 1000 people have signed up for the event that takes place Sunday morning. "This is a good opportunity for us, to make the whole public aware of our water resource, our gem of Texas, Lake Travis," Weiss.
Last year, crews that went to the lake bottom found a lot that had gone overboard.
A beer keg was given the first place ribbon for the most unusual find of 2018. "These are people who claim to be environmentally friendly, but for some reason when it comes to the lake, out of sight out of mind. We were actually diving one time when a beer can came drifting down right in front of us," Weiss.
The trash collected during the 2018 clean up, filled up hundreds of bags.
That were later hauled off to the dump.
Toxic algae that has been detected downstream in Lady Bird Lake has not been found out here just yet. But there is a problem with an invasive species and that continues to grow.
Scott Sticker, with the River Alliance, said we're luckily, there are no toxic algae blooms currently.
"The thing we've seen that's been pretty bad, is zebra mussels, they are pretty bad. Those have really exploded lately. Last year was the first year we really saw the zebra mussels, and we know they are going to be worse this year, so we've taken precaution with how we are handling the trash after the event, so we are ensuring we don't transport zebra mussels anywhere," said Sticker.
Some zebra mussels have started to die off, but only because the water level has dropped off.
The more pressing concern for the river alliance is the man made environmental damage.
"We've seen batteries in the water, we've seen people even toss the scooters that have been in the city, in the water, that's really, bad for our water source. Our drinking water comes out of Lake Travis, so we need to take care of it," said Sticker.
The Alliance has enough volunteers for the cleanup this weekend.
The sign up for next year's clean up starts in August.
Families can still come out Sunday to learn more about the lake and to cheer on the volunteers.