Is There Really A Ghost Town Under Water Near Amarillo?
Growing up, my spent almost every single spare second of summer hanging out at the lake. In western Oklahoma, that meant hanging out where a ghost town lies buried beneath the surface of the water.
Have you ever been to Lugert Lake in western Oklahoma? It's just a couple hours east of Amarillo, and it's well worth the drive to spend a weekend on the water and camping in the Quartz Mountains.
Even with a ghost town resting at the bottom of the lake.
The Town Under The Lake In Western Oklahoma
Believe it or not, there's a town under the waters of Lake Lugert. If that name doesn't ring a bell, you may be familiar with one of its other many monikers. Some call it Lake Altus, or Lake Altus-Lugert.
Lugert was founded just after the turn of the 20th century in 1902. Unfortunately, tragedy would strike again and again as tornado after tornado ransacked the town.
The people of Lugert had enough, and abandoned their home.
Swallowed By A Lake, Only To Rise From The Dead During Drought
Lugert was eventually flooded as Lake Altus expanded. However, the town wouldn't stay buried forever.
A long lasting drought brought the lake to only nine percent of its normal capacity by 2015. It was devastating not only to those who enjoyed fishing, skiing, and camping at the lake; but to farmers and ranchers as well. The lake is part of irrigating a huge portion of southwestern Oklahoma.
When the waters receded, you could see the remains of Lugert. Foundations laid bare in the Oklahoma sun once more.
Urban Legends And A Great Place To Spend A Weekend
Eventually rains would fill Lake Lugert again, and the town now rests in its watery bed. Growing up, whenever the water would get low, all of us kids would claim to see a church steeple out at Lake Lugert.
It wasn't true. None of us ever did. But it made for a cool story while waiting for school to start.
The story of Lugert, and knowing it's down there, adds to the allure of the Quartz Mountains. It's still one of my favorite places to be on the planet. Especially on hot summer days.
A trip out to the Quartz Mountains is well worth it. There's plenty to do, and you can always tell ghost stories around a campfire about the town that lies under the water.