The Flood of April 2017

At Adventure Mendota, we were excited about opening early in April.   As our third year approached, we thought “it’ll be much easier” and it was a good plan — until the rains came.   On Friday afternoon, April 21, it began to rain.   Between that time and Monday, April 24, over 5 inches of rain were measured in the rain gauge.    Monday morning brought unique problems and we  found ourselves going no where.  In both directions, this was the scene:

In the old days when this happened in Mendota,  a number of the men played poker because the Sheriff and his deputies could not get across the river.    I remember that time.

This did not compare to the flood of 1977 or even 2002.  In both of these floods, our swinging bridges were washed out.   The picture below was taken just down the road from Adventure Mendota.   If you kayak with us, this is the first swinging bridge we go under.   Other than the river ford, this bridge is the only way the farm operations at Big Loop Farm can be carried out.    We’re grateful that the swinging bridges were not disturbed this week.

Still, it was dangerously close this weekend as shown in the photo below.  This picture was taken by my neighbor, Jimmy Gill.

We use a USGS gage that is located in Weber City, VA.  The river typically has the same conditions in our location and the Weber City location.   Mike daily checks the temperature, velocity and the depth of the North Fork at this location and compares to our location.  Here’s some information he put together today that you may find interesting:

North Fork of the Holston River in Washington County    

If you have additional information or any pictures you wish to share, please send them to me.   I’ll put them on this blog!

While the river is raging tonight, she’ll be sweetened up in just a few days and back to her mellow, gentle self.   We’ll wade right back in the water and start kayaking!   See you soon!!

 

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