Looks like a good day to watch the river gauges tomorrow.

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peakbagger

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I am waiting for the evening obs higher summits forecast but it is looking like the potential for a lot of rain on frozen ground on the south slopes of the whites. My guess is the Baker, Pemi, Dry River, Rocky Branch and the Saco will be hitting record flows tomorrow. There is a shallow snow pack, although minimal compared to spring, so that is one thing that will reduce the flows. Depending on the actual track the summit will be seeing 100 MPH plus. Given the time of year I hope no one is out in the woods planning to tough it out.
 
Lot of black dots already on the USGS National Water Dashboard
 
The Peabody and Wild River went black early. No doubt the two gas stations in Plymouth near the athletic center are prepping to get flooded. Looking at the Saco (bartlett) and the East Branch of the Pemi, those are steep enough changes that various debris and gravel bars will be moving and potentially causing damming issues. The washout section on Sawyer River road usually gets taken out with rain like this. I do not think the forest service got around to taken out the bridge with the washed out approaches on Rocky Branch road this year, if they didnt, I expect its going to act like a dam again and make some interesting flood channels possibly taking out the road they fixed to take the bridge out.
 
Numbers are getting pretty insane as of 11AM. East Branch Pemi was 16,600 cfs and rising 5,000 cfs/hour. Lot of gauges still rising at 4000-5000 cfs !! Lot of the black dots are now the dreaded pink circles indicating minor flood stage. I don't imagine this is going to end well for trails, roads and homes.
 
I was at Rocky Branch bridge a month or so ago. It was never repaired. Given the gate at the bridge, wasn't clear to me why the FS closed the lower gate to add 1.5 miles onto the trek to get to the old parking area at the bridge. Maybe didn't want to encourage people to hang out on and around the bridge.
 
The Saco in Bartlett is in major flood stage, that is usually a good sign that Crawford notch and tall the feeder tributaries are pretty crazy. Usually at best there will be some washouts along the pavement.

I never could figure out the Rocky Branch issue, when it first happened, the road was washed out for quite a distance but they repaired it so they could take the bridge out and never did. The abutments look solid and the structure is in fine shape. My guess is maybe move the trailhead to put some walk in distance for the Rocky Branch shelter and tentsites?. BTW the new Rocky Branch lot has some sketchy characters with long term campsites down the old road along the river on occasion. Not a place I would want to leave a car for multiple days.
 
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Route 49 into Waterville valley is closed . The dam is holding ,but it is being put to the test. There are dam inspectors on the way to assess it.
 
The Saco in Bartlett is in major flood stage, that is usually a good sign that Crawford notch and tall the feeder tributaries are pretty crazy. Usually at best there will be some washouts along the pavement.

I never could figure out the Rocky Branch issue, when it first happened, the road was washed out for quite a distance but they repaired it so they could take the bridge out and never did. The abutments look solid and the structure is in fine shape. My guess is maybe move the trailhead to put some walk in distance for the Rocky Branch shelter and tentsites?. BTW the new Rocky Branch lot has some sketchy characters with long term campsites down the old road along the river on occasion. Not a place I would want to leave a car for multiple days.
Rocky Branch seems to be flowing down 302 in Glen.

As to the current RB parking, seems there is a wave of development taking place towards the end of Jericho Rd. A lot of lots being cleared/homes being built. I have never seen anyone around the parking lot. A lot of folks use it for casual walks.
 
Its been a few years since I was hiking in that area so maybe the local town started paying attention. Pre covid whenever I was there, there were folks who appeared to be living in the woods with their cars parked at the trailhead. A individual who was breaking in cars at lots of trailheads was eventually traced to this area about 15 years ago.

Water was running over Rt 2 in Gorham near Mr Pizza that is closed Mondays, otherwise they could offer paddle up service. The back of the Mc Donald parking lot was under water. The Moose river drainage along RT 2 from the Bowman east is cranking. Luckily the major front has gone past to give things a chance to drain.
 
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