Experimental music, photography, and adventures

More flooding

Thursday, May 12th, 2011

After writing about the areas of flooding I visited last week, I felt inspired to visit the Lake Monroe dam area to see the situation there. So, I planned a bicycle ride to the dam, and took a “scenic route” home. I wanted to see the dam and the damage to Valley Mission Road. Here’s a map of my ride.

I took a direct route to Fairfax State Recreation Area, then to the dam. Every time I ride in that area, I think it seems hillier than I remember.  There aren’t any big hills until you are near the lake, but the hills are rather constant all the way there.



Here is Baker’s Junction, the creepy “Haunted Train Museum”



Soon I was at Fairfax SRA, on Lake Monroe. I was greeted by ducks.


If you’re not familiar with the place, this might not look too weird. But, there’s a large parking lot at the bottom of the hill. It’s just underwater in these shots.



This basketball hoop might give a little more perspective.


Or this shelter …


or these partially-submerged trees …



Here’s another illustration of how high the water was. There’s a cul-de-sac that’s completely submerged right now, past where the road dips into the water.


Notice the street sign just barely sticking up.



I headed back, stopping to top off water bottles.


I headed toward the dam. On my way there I saw more high water, coming right up to the side of the road. There were people fishing from the side of the road. I wish I had gotten a photo of them.


Soon, I reached the dam. The water made a crazy sound as it was sucked down to be expelled by the floodgates. The water rushing out made quite a racket, too. I made a few videos to capture the scene, and I edited them together here. What you can’t tell from the sound in the video is that there was also a low-pitched rumbling sound that you could both hear and feel. Pretty wild.

I took some still photos, too. There were several other people there to check out the scene.








Next I wanted to see Valley Mission Road. I had heard the road was washed out.


I’d say those reports were accurate.


Some people had spotted a catfish down in the water below here and were trying to figure out a way to get it out.


The rock pictured below was placed on the road to try to stop it from washing away. It’s hard to say how effective that was; I guess we’ll find out when the rocks come off.


I probably could have continued past this point, but I would have had to climb a big hill and it might just be more flooding on the other side. I decided to turn back.

On my way back, I spotted some dead fish along the side of the road. It was a bit surreal.


I headed out. Soon I crossed State Road 37. I wasn’t sure exactly how the roads interconnected and actually ended up on an on-ramp or feeder road briefly. There was NO traffic at all.


I stopped in Harrodsburg to refuel.


Then headed back, a rather indirect route. My return trip was quite hilly.













Some ominous clouds rolled in, but no more than a few drops ever fell.








I passed a quarry or two on my way home.




This was a great ride — it was nice to have a mission of sorts (seeing and documenting the flooding and the dam), but the riding was a lot of fun, too — 36 hilly miles.




8 Responses to “More flooding”

  1. Fonk Says:

    Damn, that’s a lot of water. The landscape sure is green and pretty right now, though! Great pics!

  2. Tim S Says:

    Great pics and commentary. My fav was the wacky dead fish pic. Couldn’t make that one up.

  3. Chandra Says:

    I agree, the fish on the side of the road is freaky!
    Glad you had a great ride!!
    Peace 🙂

  4. Bill Lambert Says:

    Holy Carp! Those were big fish laying on the side of the road. Those Army Corps dams handle the water pretty well, and they were installed to make pools which collect flood water, to be released at a slower rate than if the dam wasn’t there. We’ve got 3 of those dams in NE Indiana.

  5. Pondero Says:

    Since I’m in the “flood reduction engineering” business, the reservoir operation, ponding water, and washed out road photos are of special interest. Next week I’ll be at a national conference on flooding topics in Luvall, KY. I’m guessing we’ll be talking about the mighty Mississippi River a bunch.

  6. Steve A Says:

    Actually, a bit of alcohol beyond that point looks pretty mellow, considering the view…

  7. John Romeo Alpha Says:

    Eventually, the water will go where it wants to. Down the Atchafalaya past Morgan City, for example. Time and gravity are on its side, next to which our human efforts must eventually crumble. Hopefully we are good enough at postponing that, though.

  8. mike Says:

    Glad that you have some sun with all that flooding. We are experiencing similar issues here on our almost great lake – but its been overcast and cloudy for what seems like forever…

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