|Four feet of the road edge gone after slide from Honeymoon Creek from above|
Friday, February 04, 2011
Winter Storm Damage at Scenic Hot Springs
This winter turned out to be warmer than expected and we have received significant early rainfall that coupled with the snow on the ground as fully saturated the mountainside. After the last major rainstorm at the beginning of this month, the hillside at Honeymoon Creek slid down across the BPA access road, taking out a major part of the road and hillside below. Though the road is still passable the damage is significant and we fully expect more loss at the unstable edges. The debris scoured the hillside below right into the tree line on the other side of the BPA clearcut easement.
The trail above was not affected as the area that slid is well below the actual trail.
Flash flooding from the heavy rains also did some unusual methods of damage when heavy runoff got underneath the snow pack on the road surface, channeled underneath and then burst out to the surface carried much of the underlaying road surface with it. Other areas of the BPA road also show higher than usual erosion from early winter runoff . . . the BPA culvert where Meadows Creek crosses the road is almost completely blocked. Any major rain that we get runs the risk of blowing out this culvert and taking an important part of the road with it.
The springs, themselves, fared well and were enjoyed by many people who asked for (and received) permission. Though we still have problems with trespassers (Matt took out a 50 pound trash bag of broken glass and beer bottles), by and large this winter went well (no more illegal fires that I know of).
We have and early snow melt this year (obvious with mainly rain and not snow). The springs sources have GONE COLD!!!!! This happens every year and the sources will stay cold until the melt is gone, allowing the natural hot spring water to come back up to temperature. Depending of whether we get another freeze or not, expect the springs to remain cold (and unsoakable) for several weeks at least. Presently, the Lobster Pot feeds are running at 50 F while Bear Den is running an unusual 95 F.
A photo album of the damage is here (http://www.anthonians.org/forgotten_knot/2010-11%20Winter%20Storm%20Damage/)