Monday, July 4, 2011

Powerful

Fall (normal water levels) and this Spring

As we don't live in the flood plain, we have been able to watch this year's water levels with more interest than nervousness.  Of course getting close to the water does make me nervous and we kept the kids far, far away.  But we did enjoy watching, from a safe distance, the sheer power of water + gravity.  This is Big Cottonwood Creek (which I don't believe actually flooded) a few weeks ago.  For comparison, look at the following pictures of the same creek last Spring (which was also a very high water year; impressively high, we thought at the time) versus now.
Turbulence---brown and white

Air full of spray

The air was misty all around, like at Niagara Falls

Seb's squinched-up shoulders=a sure sign of excitement
Churning water.  It's mesmerizing.  Terrifying, too, if you allow yourself to think about it (I tried not to imagine anybody falling in, but was unsuccessful)


Boys, off on an adventure

Two small friends, unable to look at the camera simultaneously

Calm, and apparently unafraid that someone might mistake her for a marshmallow

1 comment:

  1. I am always unsuccessful - not imagining the worst. But I'm pretty sure that's a reaction to my more otter-nothing-bad-happens-ever-so-don't-worry-just-slide nature. And I'm also pretty sure that's why my kids have survived streets and rivers and strangers and never ran with scissors. Trust is not a thing I am familiar with. That water is flowing behind my house, even as I write - a good two months after run-off is usually over. We don't see the white water - and might be fooled by the relatively smooth surface of a river that is traveling with tremendous force, about five feet deep.

    We irrigated yesterday - went to the head gate that's at the end of what looks like a quiet little creek. It's sucked out of the river through a small gate and goes back out to the river through a smaller gate - unless we open the irrigation gates. Yesterday, the little creek was fullish, but turgid - it didn't seem to be moving at all. The level of it was above the opening of the back to rive gate, and the water didn't seem to be moving at all.

    We opened our head gate, wondering if we'd get any flow. It wasn't long before we realized that the flow was unusually strong and swift - but the surface of the water in the creek didn't show any movement at all still. Then I thought about our river - it doesn't look still - it looks rushing. But I know I've been underestimating the raw power underneath even that surface.

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