Sunday, January 17, 2010

Winter Rivers...

Wading River - January 13, 2010 (photo by Chris Meyers)

I'm averaging less than one canoe trip per week and that won't change until March. The most recent was a wonderful winter trip on the Wading River, a pretty little stream in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. It was a cold day but not too cold for a river trip (about 35 deg.). It was exquisitely beautiful and serenely quiet. Atlantic White Cedar, amazing ice formations, scent of pine and lots of tricky maneuvering around fallen trees = balm for the soul.

It's been nearly three weeks since my last post and since then most of the waterways in the Delaware River Basin have fallen to near normal levels. The NYC reservoirs were up to almost 91% capacity at the beginning of January but have fallen a bit down to 88%.

This is time of year that we begin to assess ice build-up and the amount of snow pack, usually but not always a concern specific to the Upper Delaware watershed. The winter floods and "spring freshets" can be the most destructive of the distinct flood types that occur on the Delaware River.

More on that later, but here is an interesting discussion and list of winter floods that have occurred in New Jersey courtesy of USGS.

Taking a week off for surgery and then plan to take a trip up to Narrowsburg, NY in late January for a look at the river and to do some eagle watching.