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Sandy and Wolf Creeks: A Community Project to Protect Recreational Uses

A project to reduce bacteria and protect recreational safety in Sandy and Wolf creeks. The stakeholders and TCEQ are developing a total maximum daily load (TMDL) and implementation plan (I-Plan), which together will be the road map for improving water quality.

photo of Sandy Creek
Sandy Creek

Counties: Jasper, Tyler
Parameter: Bacteria
Basin: Neches River
Segment: 0603A, 0603B
Assessment Units (AUs): 0603A_01, 0603B_01

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Background and Goals

The watersheds of Sandy Creek and Wolf Creek lie in the gulf coast region of east Texas in the Neches River Basin. Both creeks are tributaries of B.A. Steinhagen Lake. The Sandy Creek watershed is in Jasper County and includes the city of Jasper. The Wolf Creek watershed is in Tyler County and includes the city of Colmesnell.

High concentrations of bacteria, which are found in both human and animal waste, have been observed in Sandy Creek (Segment 0603A, AU 0603A_01) and Wolf Creek (Segment 0603B, AU 0603B_01). The presence of these bacteria may indicate a health risk to people who swim or wade in the creeks—activities referred to as “contact recreation” in the Texas Surface Water Quality Standards.

The goal of this project is to improve water quality in order to protect recreational uses. Toward that goal, the TCEQ and stakeholders are developing a TMDL and an I-Plan to reduce bacteria in Sandy and Wolf creeks.

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Get Involved

Staff from the Texas Water Resources Institute have been working with communities, interest groups, and local organizations to distribute information about this project and involve stakeholders in developing the I-Plan for watershed improvement. All public meetings about this project are open to anyone interested. Watch for meeting announcements here.

Meeting Records

Meeting records are available below.

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For More Information

Please send an e-mail to, and mention the Sandy and Wolf creeks bacteria project in the subject line. Or call us at 512-239-6682.

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communities working together taking care of our rivers, lakes, and bays