Sunday, August 1, 2010

When It Rains It Pours....

Summer Storms. That time of year out here in the West where we get our rain in short violent bursts. The Desert changes in an instant from parched arid soil with small creeks which are often dusty arroyos into raging torrents of water.

This week I am in Utah though and the weather here is just about the same. Wet in the afternoons and evenings with pockets of rain that can be seen miles away.

Looking North over Boulder Mountain the storms are forming.

The storms are coming in now and it is only a few minutes before it is pouring down.

The rain drops almost an inch of rain in about 20 min. We know we can't take the motos but we hop into the truck to see if there are any flash floods in town or in the park.

The go kart track is now a river. Not that anyone has ever seen a go kart on the track....

The driveway to the Sandstone Inn is awash in rocks swept down from the hill above. Water still flows and we head off to the park.

As we get past the visitor center we come upon the first signs that the water is up and more is gushing into the canyon. While most of my friends know this, it is worth repeating. STORMS MILES AWAY CAN CAUSE FLOODING CLOSE TO YOU! Therefore if you are in areas subject to flash flooding and small canyons make sure you are out before the afternoon storms hit.

Here you can see one of the waterfalls flowing into the already swollen Fremont River.

Another water fall just up the road from there.

This view shows just how much water is coming our way.

We drive on to Grand Wash where we run into Dave and a few other Rangers. The water has already passed here this time but it was pretty massive. The road sits about 6ft(2meters) above the wash and there is mud and debri all over the road.

Bob, Janet and I just look on in amazement at the power of the water. Dave tells us that there are 2 people on the other side of the river that they are not sure they can get out today. Also cars in the parking lot at the other end of the Grand Wash Trail are stuck in mud and they are using a Bulldozer to pull them out. Did I mention that you need to be careful around these canyons yet???

Mud all over the road

One of the things I love about this part of Utah is the fact that they get the roads cleared fast. Pretty cool that this guy was on the scene so fast.

Janet and a ranger discussing the bike race. That whole flood thing is really not news the day after a race smile

Even now the sun is starting to peek out over the horizon. These storms come and go. But the flash flood is still miles away from us and coming.

Other Storms in the area are still dumping water into the basin

I always have to take this picture here since Caneman and I took some here years ago.

We decide to head towards home again. As we get to the visitor center though we see the river has crested and is in major flood stage. We turn around and race back to Hickman Bridge to catch it coming downstream.

We get there and I start to take some photos. Please take note of the water level compared to the cement walls on the side of the bridge. The amount of time it took to fill was under 10 seconds.

That my friends is a LOT of water!!

We head back to the house amazed again at what nature can do.

Not sure "What it Means" but I sure do love being up here.

Next the ride to Colorado and putting the band back together for a while..........

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