What do you think of when you think of a large rain storm? Does a flooded street come to mind? A raging river as you drive over a bridge? Overfull gutters and backed up storm drains? A pond where there was not one before? During large rain events, we are often able to observe clues about where the excess water ends up flowing. In smaller stream channels, precipitation can rapidly change flow conditions. However, the magnitude of the flow response is dependent on both the qualities of the precipitation- the amount, the duration, the intensity- and the characteristics of the stream channel itself. Every channel is different as is every storm event and that is where Stream Tracker becomes so vital.
The stream channels being monitored are mostly intermittent channels where there is flow seasonally. However, stream channels can flow ephemerally following a storm event where there is water flowing in the channel for minutes, hours or even days after a storm. This means that channels that look like they have dried up can flow again and areas where you have never observed flow can surprise you with flow following the storm.
Here are some of the highlights from the wet start to August.
Flash flooding near Grand Junction captured at a Stream Tracker point:
More video footage of the rain event:
Before and after photos captured at one of the Stream Tracker sensors sites for the large hail storm that hit Larimer County 8/10/2017
Falls Creek Drive Stream Tracker point had dried up near the end of June but started flowing following the period of heavy rain the site experienced around August 10-13. However, flow in the channel has once again ceased.
See the data from this Stream Tracker locaiton HERE
Share your observations with us! We want to know how you see the stream channels you are monitoring change with rainfall events.
Please be careful being out in rain storms and please heed wet trail condition closures.