Fox River Flood

by Downtowner, posted on Thursday, April 18th, 2013 at 2:42 pm

After last year’s drought it was a relief to learn, just the other day, that our soil moisture has officially reached normal levels. But as they say, when it rains, it pours. And it’s not only been raining, it’s predicted to start again at around two this afternoon and keep raining until around midnight. Here are a few pics of current conditions - these pics are from St. Charles, but there are problems up and down the valley.

First, the Illinois Street Bridge is closed, not because there is water on the bridge, there isn’t. I remember this bridge closing in 2008, because water had filled the bridge arches and was hitting the side of the deck - a problem for this particular bridge as it’s sitting on the riverbed, rather than anchored in it, so the force of water broadsiding the deck has the potential to unmoor it. Not a big potential, but it exists, so in an excess of caution it was closed. Just a guess, but I suspect the same sort of thing is going on now, since there is no water on the bridge.

Illinois Street Bridge is closed

Illinois Street Bridge is closed

Then there is Mt St Mary Park, which often takes on some water when the river is high, and/or when it rains a lot. I just don’t remember it taking on quite this much water.

Mt St Mary Park - looking northeast toward Illinois Street Bridge

Mt St Mary Park - looking northeast toward Illinois Street Bridge

Yep, that’s a park bench and artwork far in the foreground.

Here’s another shot of the park. Normally, from this gazebo to the river’s edge is, well, far - a sea of grass and a network of sidewalks, spotted with benches and art. It’s all just water now.

Mt St Mary Park looking east from the gazebo

Mt St Mary Park looking east from the gazebo

Mt St Mary is on the west side of the Fox River, and Route 25, just across the river from it, is taking on some water, and the bike path between the road and the river is just under water. That happens occasionally, so not too shocking to see, but it just appears to be a little more extensive than is usual.

This is Route 25, heading south from the Illinois Street Bridge, you can see the water is over the bike trail, and a little further down they are pumping water off the roadway.

Route 25 south of Illinois Street Bridge

Route 25 south of Illinois Street Bridge

To the best of my recollection, the tree in the following shot is normally located between the river bank and the bike path - both under water here.

Bike Path where are you???

Bike Path where are you???

The following shots are not the Fox River, they are rather of Seventh Avenue Creek, a normally small creek, usually deep down - I’d say five feet or more to the bottom of this cut - near Illinois Street, well east of the river bluff. A portion of Illinois Street - between 7th and 13th Avenues - is closed for this creek flooding. The first shot is the creek, the second is an angle from Illinois north, and the third is the culvert that runs under Illinois - clearly the water is up to the top of the edge and sometimes sloshing over. Houses and their back yards are being impacted - I saw sandbags - but no one seems to be flooded out yet. This is seriously usually a tiny trickle of a creek.

tiny creek, filling yards.

tiny creek, filling yards.

Seventh Avenue Creek, viewed from Illinois to the north

Seventh Avenue Creek, viewed from Illinois to the north

Seventh Avenue Creek culvert under Illinois Street

Seventh Avenue Creek culvert under Illinois Street

It’s strange to be hoping for no more rain after last year’s daily wishing and hoping and praying for rain, but so it is. We are hoping it stops now, but the forecast says more is on the way today.

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