Sunday, July 02, 2006

Saturated ground and the danger zone

What makes this summer so unusual is we are not experiencing another drought, although we were under a drought warning until a few days ago. The baseflow of streams and groundwater has recharged and the ground is saturated, conditions that are unusual for this time of year, and that could produce a reoccurrance of flooding in smaller streams with just a few inches of rain.

Several more rainfree days are needed to get past this vulnerable position. Even the big rivers could flood again with a moderate rain event. The Delaware River at Riegelsville is almost flatlining at around 16.60' after its initial quick drop. Larger tribs like the Lehigh are going down steadily, albeit slowly. Small tribs are approaching normal levels.

And the bad news is that the National Weather Service has issued a severe weather alert with a prediction of potential thunderstorms though July 4th; some may be severe with heavy downpours.

This will need to be closely watched.

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