Authorization: Flood Control Act approved October 23, 1962; Project Document SD 45, 87th Congress, 2d Session. The project name was changed from Clayton Lake to Sardis Lake by Public Law 97-88 approved December 4, 1981. Public Law 99-88, approved August 15, 1985, authorized access road improvements, and Public Law 98-63, approved July 30, 1983, authorized an intake structure.
Location: At river mile 2.8 on Jackfork Creek, a tributary of the Kiamichi River, about 2.5 miles north of Clayton and 5 miles northwest of Tuskahoma in Pushmataha County, Oklahoma.
Purpose: Flood control, water supply, recreation, and fish and wildlife.
History of Construction: Construction began in August 1975 and the project became operational in December 1982. Impoundment started in January 1983, and the conservation pool filled to the stage filling plan (elevation 596.0) in March 1984.
Type of Structure: The rolled earth-filled dam is 14,138 feet long, rises 81 feet above the valley floor to a maximum height of 101 feet, and has a crest width of 32 feet.
Spillway & Outlet Works: An uncontrolled spillway is located in the right abutment at the end of the embankment. The uncontrolled spillway is 215 feet wide with a concrete, inverted "U" sill section at elevation 611.0. Design capacity of the spillway is 29,400 cubic feet per second (cfs) at maximum pool. The outlet works has a capacity to release 4,100 cfs at top of conservation pool, and consist of a gate tower with two 4.25- by 12.25-foot hydraulically-operated wheel gates with two emergency gates and stoplog slots. The gate tower includes a wet well with selective intakes controlled by slide gates. Low flow and water supply discharges from the wet well through a 2.5- by 5.25-foot sluice in the splitter pier. A 9.0- by 12.25-foot cut-and-cover oblong conduit is located through the embankment about 1,800 feet left of the right abutment. The conduit, at top of flood control pool, can release 4,320 cfs. A concrete stilling basin is provided.
Hydrologic Data: Storm studies show the flood of record at the dam site occurred in May 1943 (pre-construction) with an estimated discharge of 60,000 cfs and a volume of 80,000 acre-feet, which is equivalent to 5.45 inches of runoff from the upstream drainage area. The total volume of inflow in the May 2015 flood was 296,112 acre-feet with a peak inflow of 53,500 cfs. During the April-May 1990 flood, the lake crested at elevation 612.15 and the peak release was 5,675 cfs.
Water Storage allotments: Water storage allotments are based on percentages of the conservation pool. The Oklahoma City Utility Authority holds 100% (274,068 acre-feet) of the water supply.