Wednesday, April 23, 2008

bring out the wellies...........

The Saint John river is rising and it hasn't crested yet. The ice from northern New Brunswick has broken up and is elevating the water levels downriver. Expectations are high that this flood may be a record one, and in fact the river has overflowed onto the old Trans Canada highway just past Fredericton. It's now closed until further notice and the homesteaders along that part of the valley, who cope most years with flooding, are on alert.

Max and I headed downtown late this afternoon to check it out and to take some pics to share. These are taken in the parking lot behind my old office building.........the walking trail as well as the little boat launch shed is under water.

This is a shot taken behind the Lord Beaverbrook Hotel. The water was lapping right over the outdoor patio and up to the back doors. Sandbags are piled up high along the back of the hotel, though I don't think they will help matters. Beside the hotel is the Beaverbrook Art Gallery......I'm sure they have moved many pieces out of there for safe storage. When the famous flood of 1973 hit this area, they had a great deal of damage. During that one, people were canoeing down Queen Street! The whole downtown core was under several feet of water. Though I've seen photos, I can't imagine it. And if it does happen again, my office will be seriously affected as it is located just across the street from this hotel.

This shot gives you an idea of how wide the river is...... .I'd say it's at least twice as wide as it normally is. The picture is deceiving too as the water looks murky but relatively calm when in fact it is moving quite quickly. There is a current pulling ice flows and logs and debris downriver at a fast clip. As Max and I walked along the shore, we talked of our appreciation for nature's strength and how respectful we must always be of it.

Our home is safely situated on a hill up high enough that flooding is never an issue with us. Perhaps tomorrow, I'll head down to the part of the river we look onto and take some pictures from there. The islands in the middle are completely submerged, with just the treetops visible. It's quite amazing. I think we actually made the national news. :)


Rainbow dreams said...

Thats incredible, I know you were expecting flooding. The forces of nature always remind me of how small we really are.
Thanks for the photos

Under there... said...

That is amazing. It floods every year, even though it is not as bad as this? I think those wonderful boots should make the national news.

NB taxpayer said...

Thanks for the great shots! It's hard to fathom the damage that could ensue in the next few days. I pray for the ppl of freddy.

Awareness said...'s much more dramatic downriver I think. There's a picture on the front page of the local paper of a kid riding his bike through the water on the street AND a canoe paddling right beside him! Bizarre!!

Tim....There are some springs when it doesn't flood. The water level rises, but it doesn't break the banks.
Yes, don't you LOVE those boots? They are my daughter's favs. Got them at the Gap if you are interested!

nb taxpayer.....very welcome. i will check things out tomorrow too and post some if has changed. I don't think it's going to go any higher. Charles has some great shots on his blog.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

This is incredible! I cannot imagine how bizarre and rather scary this must be for you...! Just the idea that your office might be completely submerged or near that has to be surreal! Seeing the pictures you posted gives one just a small idea of what you are experiencing...! This is all quite overwhelming to comtemplate.

Gypsy said...

The wonders of the world - our once mighty River Murray, the lifeblood of millions is a mere shadow of it's former self while yours is bursting it's banks.

I guess all that snow had to go somewhere once it melted. What a shame it couldn't be redirected here. We could sure do with some of that.

I hope the damage stays minimal to the people of your city and I'm glad to hear that you are out of harm's way.

Awareness said...

Naomi....I havent heard whether it has crested or not, but it doesn't seem to be getting any worse. So, the downtown core is fine. It was no surprise because of the amount of snow accumulated this year. What saved us is that the precipitation this month has been minimal. had it rained alot I think it would've been worse. Having said that there are people whose homes downriver from where I live (on high dry land) are surrounded by water. I was out and about today and saw some of the water levels in other parts. It's quite amazing, but predictable. People were ready for worse.

gypsy.....yes......too bad we couldn't have sent some snow your way. It turns out we had a total of about 12 feet of the stuff over the course of the winter.....good thing some of it melting along the way. Even with that, the drifts and piles of snow were so high and now there are only remnants left in the places where it's shaded..... It's all gone on my street...... unbelievable.
Tomorrow, I can start cleaning up and clearing out my garden! Yippee!