Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Mississippi Flooding

This past Sunday the weather was really nice so I decided to take a day trip and head down the Mississippi in search of eagles to photograph. Since bald eagles eat primarily fish many head south during the winter in search of open water. Now that most of the ice has melted off of the lakes the eagles are heading back north again which makes it a good time for photographing eagles.
I was also curious about all of the flooding that has been going on. We typically see some flooding each spring as the snow melts but his year we have seen more then usual flooding on the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers. The reason is the unseasonably warm weather that we have had lately. With temps in March reaching up into the 60s and 70s, tomorrows high is forcasted to be 78, the snow has melted very rapidly. The average high at this time of year is 49 degrees.
Since the ground has not fully thawed yet the snow melt can not be absorbed and so it runs off into the rivers which are now swelling over their banks. In Red Wing Colville Park, which is located on the bank of the Mississippi was closed due to the high water. I decided to walk in to the park to take some pics. As you can see from the pic above the water stretched all the way back to the picnic area.
Further down river the Lake City rest stop was now a part of Lake Pepin. The rails in the back ground of the above picture are the top of the stairs that lead down to a small beach.
The Mississippi River is not the only river that has over run its banks. The Vermillion River, which runs down through Hastings, MN was also flooded out. The picture above is where there would typically be a parking lot for the boat launch. Now you need a boat just to get to the parking. Fortunately it appears that most of the rivers have crested and have begun to go back down to normal.


2sweetnsaxy said...

That would be a little scary for me to see the water rise like that. Great shots.

KaHolly said...

Wow! That's pretty 'watery'!! Great shots!