Friday, September 15, 2006

September 16 River Clean-up Postponed

Sharon Maclean studies the terrain on Lynn Island durng a trash reconnaisance canoe trip. The recent flood caused dramatic changes to the riverscape.


Saturday, September 23 Bulls Island to Hendricks Island
Saturday, September 30 Riegelsville to Upper Black Eddy

Drat! Another rainout...

The last Operation River Bright to be postponed was the one unfortunately scheduled for the week after Hurricane Ivan hit, causing the first of what would turn out to be a spate of three consecutive record setting floods.

This is a mere postponement due to a 2-foot + rise in the Delaware River (Riegelsville gage), which was at 4' before the spike. It's already above 6' and looks like it will peak between 7' and 8'.

What can I say? It's been that kind of year weather-wise. And the Poconos got another monsoon. Streams up there are extremely high and that has impacted the Lower Delaware. The Brodhead Creek went from 200 CFS to 5,000 CFS in less than 24 hours yesterday. On the NJ side the Paulinskill, Pequest and Musconetcong saw big spikes too, although not as dramatic as the Brodhead or Bushkill.

When I went to bed last night I really had no idea that we'd need to postpone this Saturday's cleanup because of high water. Anything above 5' becomes problematic and 6' is out of the question, and for what we have planned on Hendricks Island (involving barges and ropes) above 4.5 would be a problem. It's not that the river is unsafe at 6' but sending people repeatedly into the river banks to collect trash would be irresponsible (strainers).

Fortunately we have quite a talented team of volunteers raring to go so hopefully folks can be flexible with their schedules.

I have proposed the Hendricks/Stockton river cleanup (originally scheduled for the 16th) be put off until next week (23rd) and the Riegelsville - Milford cleanup will be held Sept. 30.

A land-based cleanup may be scheduled if the high water problems persist. But I am optimistic that the Delaware will come back down to a nice level based on the forecast for the coming week.

PS: Sunday is the American Canoe Association - Delaware Valley Division picnic and annual meeting at Round Valley (anyone interested in joining us please contact me or GO HERE.

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