Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Morning Sun

The sun is shining through the trees as I write this morning. A sweet sight, after three days of steady rain finally ceased last night. Our yard feels like a floating peat bog -- spongy, bouncy, and saturated.

Swollen rivers, flooded fields, overflowing wetlands are already receding and draining. Newmarket lies at the mouth of a 42 mile river and its watershed that gathers water from parts of 14 towns. Here the Lamprey River and smaller tributaries are still raging.

 The Lamprey River in downtown Newmarket

 The Lamprey River at Packers Falls, Durham

 The Lamprey River at Wadleigh Falls, Lee
 
 The Lamprey River at Route 87 Bridge, Epping

Closer to home, my daily walk on Bald Hill Road has been fractured by a repeat blow-out that first occurred two weeks ago. The repair did not last, but who knew we'd get another 7 inches of rain.

Bald Hill Road, Newfields

Several roads remain closed here and in neighboring towns. Many commuters have an even longer commute this morning. Some homes are stranded between low spots in the road. Water still flows across these roads.

 Bennett Road, Durham

Surprisingly the last two storms were not record rainfall events. Here is a table from a UNH/NOAA website:


In recent decades, as more land was developed in the watershed, it reduced the ability of the land to absorb water. More roads and driveways and rooftops also caused water to run off faster. We then forced this water into culverts that are too small to handle the force of nature. Clean-up and repairs start anew.

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