Friday, June 25, 2010

Running Low…

Delaware River Sojurners at the Rieglesville boat ramp with Roebling Bridge in foreground.

A mid-week paddle trip between Phillipsburg and Riegelsville provided a much needed connection to the river and environs.

Highlights of the trip included a bald eagle sighting, a few osprey, blue heron, green heron and kingfishers. We didn’t see many boaters until the Raubsville lunch break where we encountered the seventy-some members of the annual Delaware River Sojourn. I visited with several members of that entourage, including members of the National Canoe Safety Patrol.

The other notable feature of the trip was the powerful wind gusts, which seemed to alternate between headwind and tailwind depending on the bend of the river.

The Delaware and its tributaries are down due to the lack of rain, which has come sparingly for most of us in the form of brief summer storms.

The Delaware is running at just over 3.50’ at the Riegelsville gage and that’s slightly below the median flow. The Lehigh @ Bethlehem is running several hundred cfs below the median. There isn’t much rain in the extended forecast so streams will continue to fall.

According to the Bucks County Herald the Delaware Canal will be filled with Lehigh River water (the usual source) on July 23. It’s been dry since a series of devastating floods destroyed several sections of the canal. It took over 3 years and several millions dollars to do all the repairs. One catastrophic flood is all it takes.

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