Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Chippewa River Floods - 2014 edition

One year ago Mid-Michigan experienced its most severe flooding in nearly thirty years.  With heavy rains over the weekend, many rivers in our area are again experiencing flooding this April.  The flood waters are not as high, but are still impressive.  Here are some photos that I took over the past two days.

The first few photos were taken on Monday at Chipp-A-Waters Park in Mt. Pleasant.

Probably not the brightest idea...  Parks workers taking a Gator through 8 or more inches of water.

The Chippewa River is to the left in this photo.  The tree in the foreground in normally several feet above water on the near bank.

The canoe landing at Chipp-A-Waters Park - the end of the landing is several feet under water at this stage

Eroding riverbank at Chipp-A-Waters Park - there is a planned project to stabilize this bank over the Summer.

The next six photographs are also from Monday.  This set of pictures was taken at Mill Pond Park - downstream from Chipp-A-Waters Park.

Pedestrian bridge over the Chippewa River - If you click the link in the first paragraph you can see a photo from the same vantage point taken one year ago.

Water flowing over the weirs in Mill Pond Park

A large tree trunk stuck on a weir - the trough in the water in front of it was probably more than 2 feet deep.  A half hour after this picture was taken this tree trunk was gone, washed downstream by the strong current.

Water rushing against the dam in Mill Pond Park

It's called a "floodplain" for a reason...

Waterfowl were enjoying the flooded shorelines;  pedestrians, not so much...

The next photograph was taken on Monday at Nelson Park, the next park downstream. This was my favorite photo of the day.  Water levels continued to rise after this picture was taken. 

An American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) forages along the edge of the flooded lawn at Nelson Park
The remaining photographs were taken on Tuesday at Island Park and Pickens Field.  These parks are downstream from all the parks in the above photos.

Flooded softball field at Pickens Field

Looking across the pedestrian bridge from Pickens Field to Island Park - the Vietnam Memorial is mostly underwater

Flooding at Island Park in Mt. Pleasant - Maybe that sign should have a swimmer on it instead...

Flooding from the Chippewa River at Island Park - the line of small trees in the center for the photo shows the normal location of the riverbank.

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