Floating down the Willamette River?

By reeset / On / In Family

One of the things that Oregon has traditionally been famous for is her rainy winters.  However, to visit over the past four or so years, you really wouldn’t think that the reputation was deserved.  In fact, we haven’t had our last good flooding since 1996.  Well, who doggie, we are making up for it this last week.  Since Tuesday, Salem, Or. has gotten 7 1/2 inches of rain.  Its been like this all over the state.  And because of it, there’s been mud slides closing highways and interstates throughout the state.  In my neck of the woods, Independence, OR (map), we have the Willamette River running right by our small community.  Fortunately, our city sits quite a bit above the river, so very little of it is actually in the 100 year flood plain. 

Anyway, I went for a little drive today and stopped by our local park where we have our outside amphitheater — which has now turned into a giant swimming pool.  So, I snapped a few pictures (I’m trying out the new thumbnail stuff in WordPress 2.0, so you should click on the picture to see the full shot).

 Independence Park Independence Park with Kids toys Independence Park -- double rainbow.

Then, after taking some pictures of the new city pool, my family and I drove to the bridge the crosses the Willamette.  Its a back road into Salem that sits on some low ground…definitely in the flood plain.  We didn’t get very far because the bridge was closed to traffic, so we parked and walked over.  I wish I’d had my camera ready because there was a car full of geniuses trying to cross the high water, only realizing about 15 feet in that it was going to be quite a bit deeper than their auto.  Fortunately, they were able to back out before their car stalled.  Even more fortunate, since it was just lowland flooding, there was no current so their temporary lack of judgement didn’t endanger anything but their auto.  Anyway, here are some pictures…

Walking across the Independence Bridge High water...what an understatement. Flooding the valley.





4 thoughts on “Floating down the Willamette River?

  1. Yeah, I wish I would have been thinking on Friday — we got 3 inches of rain that day and every stream in the area was bursting. We have a small stream near our house that has an old dam on it. However, over the years, it has developed a small bit of damage but its never affected its use since we’ve lived in the area. Friday however, we got so much rain and the stream swelled so quickly, it burst the dam and moved the concrete about 20 feet downstream.


  2. These (especially the first three photos) are beautiful…exquisite. I assume you have the HUCs for each too (I’m kidding but you probably do). Thanks!