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We are, as I type experiencing widespread flooding in the Northwest. It's not a pretty picture. All the snowfall and then warm temperatures are causing quite a commotion. I cannot even imagine what many people are going through. In some towns, they are still recovering from flooding that occurred last year. There are areas that see severe flooding yearly and I'm not sure I'd stay year after year. I might, but who knows.
Already in barely a month we've had very extreme weather conditions. We live along the Lewis River in Cowlitz county. We drive by the river everyday. Our little town is only 25 feet above sea level. So for us to experience the kind of snow we did a few weeks ago is rare. I think they said it had been 30 years or longer since they've seen that kind of snow. Then the temperatures rose, the rain came and now we are hit with a flood warning. There are portions of our river that flood yearly, but the last flood that required a flood warning was in 1996. In 1996 Kat was barely 3 months old when I looked out the window of our trailer (which was settled on our old church property which sat on the river) and said to hubby "umm...why is the field covered with water?" Soon enough we had to evacuate. The water came within inches of going through our front door, but we were spared. Maybe I'll put some pictures up later.
I watched my niece today and after my MIL came to get her Nan went home with them. At 2:00 I got a call from my MIL saying that they were putting up the sea wall in town and I might want to come get Nan soon so I didn't hit traffic. So I left. Well...too late! Seems like school let out, people were leaving work, who knows, but anywhere there was pavement, there was traffic. Even the freeway off ramps were backed up. Kat and I stopped at the store to grab bread and milk at the pharmacy on the way. They were out of bread. I figured with all the traffic there was no way I was going to try to get to safeway for bread and get Nan, get back across town before the seawall went up. (The seawall separates part of town from the outskirts and would block our way. We could get around another way, but it would take forever.) As we headed through town we noticed the RV's and motor homes were parked in the parking lots of the stores rather than in the park that sits on the river. The airplanes were parked on higher ground by our little airport. The news truck sat waiting to catch any breaking news. And the large Heavy Rescue Rig pulled into town. We eventually got to Nan and got home nearly 45 minutes later. What would normally take us 5 minutes. They expect the river to hit flood stage at 4:00 this afternoon...I haven't heard if it has, and to crest at 5:00 tomorrow morning. We'll see what happens. We're obviously praying that it doesn't flood.
Here are some pictures Kat took today as we drove through town. Not the best as she was taking them as we were moving and there was no way we could stop. The camera was probably on the wrong setting and my ginormous lens was on it.
This is property behind one of the churches in town. This does flood regularly, but it gives you an idea.
This is right along the road, just after the seawall. It's getting high that is for sure.
I know our town is taking every precaution it can. Thankfully (I think...I know nothing about this sort of stuff), our river has two or three dams on it, and they've been holding back water for awhile and releasing it slowly. I think that has helped. In 1996 they didn't do that and it resulted in widespread flooding. President Clinton even visited our town.
I will keep you posted. Please be praying for many of my friends and even family who are being affected by this flooding to some degree. My sister is pretty much house bound since they have closed the roads around her due to mudslides and landslides.
My family has left to go get movies and check out what's happening...they are brave. We'll see how far they get. I think it will be a night of movies, the wii, games, and whatever.