Water into Whine

Loverly day in North Puffin today. It’s not going to rain.

We’ve gotten over 9 inches of rain since April Fools Day, which is three times the normal rainfall for the period. The not-quite-great-but-still-pretty-darned-good Lake Champlain is more than three feet above flood stage and has broken the all time record for high water by more than a foot.

There was supposed to be patchy fog around this morning but not here. It will be at least partly sunny all day. The temp should be in at least the lower 60s and the 10-15 mph north winds all along the lake will tend to push the water back into the lake and slow the drop, but it ought not drive too much more onshore.

Last night’s report did show the water level draining down a couple of inches from the record high of 103.2 feet above sea level Friday afternoon.

Buying flood insurance never occurred to Bill Stapleton in Underhill. At least not until flood waters swept away 70 feet of his driveway. That cost him $2,000 to fix and temporarily stranded Stapleton and his wife, St. Albans Town Manager Christine Murphy who just approved our concert budget for Bay Day. There are 13,834 structures in the state in high hazard flood zones, and just 2,355 have flood insurance.

The flooding may continue for weeks and will continue to impact homes and camps through the spring and into the summer. Roads and people who are underwater now will be underwater for weeks to come. It usually takes 20 days per foot of drop to drain according to the National Weather Service. That means 60 days — well after the 4th of July — just to get back down to flood stage. If it doesn’t rain more.

Everybody’s talking about Memphis these days. In terms of water in your house, it is NOLA all over again here on the tenth largest lake in the United States and nobody has noticed.

3 thoughts on “Water into Whine

  1. For the record, the North Puffin farmhouse I generally write about sits about 120′ above sea level and the barn about 10′ higher. When I start writing about a flood there, build an ark.

  2. I have commented on the small e-mail list of retired engineers — which nobody reads — that it has not rained on my lawn in nearly 90 days. I live in SE TX. My son the engineer lives about 100 miles farther East, and he received 1/2 inch last week that was immediately swallowed up by the cracks in the ground.

    Folks in Louisiana report only slight rain this spring, but the freakin’ Mississippi River is bringing it all down from up Puffin way; and they are afraid the Levee will break. In NOLA the bros in the hood are already drawing maps of the best places to loot. This time they won’t have George W Bush to kick around.

    — George

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