60,000 CFS of water will not only scour the vegetation on the bottom but it will also shove huge a tonnage of gravel around as well as move some pretty good size rocks and small boulders. As you can see from this picture I took this morning the bottom of the White River is once again clean and looks like it did 16 years ago. The limestone bedrock has it’s greenish yellow tinge back and it is pretty and beautiful. There are still some traces of didymo on the bottom that I found and I guess it will never go away so we’ll have to live with it, but; we can enjoy the bottom in the mean time as it is supposed to look. This volume of water has not only cleaned the bottom but has also made a few changes at the shoals as well as some of the holes. As far as I can tell and from reports from other guides on the river these changes have made the river a bit more navigable in areas that were made less so from bank slides in 2002 and from flood gate water in 2008. A good bit of the habitat put in the C&R has washed out and some of it has settled in other areas or along the banks. The State Park gravel bar has shrunk as have the gravel bar on the Baxter Co. side (left) between the two ramps at the C&R area by the Dam.
Due Eddy slough has filled in somewhat and the bend below the spring is all gravel and the shoal has narrowed up a bunch. The ramp at the park is very usable as all of that gravel has been washed away. The two small rocky islands in the middle of the State Park hole aren’t islands any more as there is very little rock left there. The ramp at White Hole is tough to use as gravel has covered most of the ramp and is very soft. Lots of gravel has been moved in White Hole as well as at three chutes where there is now a new gravel drop off on the right side of the river. There is also one at Wildcat where the gravel on the inside bend is also different. I think in the long run this event is good for the river. It needed a good flushing out and clean up. Except for some damage to some structures and property I’d like to see an occasional artificial flush from time to time. (This picture above was taken at the ramp by the golf course looking down stream.)
This picture to the right is of the new gravel deposits just below the Due Spring outlet (Big Spring) taken from the top of the metal stair case there. The channel as shrunk a bunch and forced more water through a smaller space.
Yesterday; Friday the water was shut off at midnight and came online at 9:00 am and the same for today. Tomorrow; Sunday weak generation of one unit is scheduled for the morning and at noon another unit will be brought online. The lake level is at 691.80 or just below 3 feet from the top of the flood pool. The surface temp of the lake is 84.8 at point 5 and at 50 feet is 63.1 The temps continue to drop and at 100 feet the temp is 58.7 and at teh bottom of the lake at this site the temp at 200 feet is 48.6