Sunday, September 23, 2012

Nenana River Flooding

Hydrograph courtesy of the Alaska-Pacific RFC
The Nenana River at Healy reached the highest stage of record Saturday, causing problems in the Denali National Park east end area.The hydrograph on the left shows a peak stage of 14.9 feet, well above the previous record of 14.4 feet set September 15, 1990. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner is reporting threats to the Parks Highway north of the Denali National Park entrance as the river erodes the banks. In spots the river is threatening the road, which in a stretch between the Glitter Gulch and Healy is perched on a narrow ledge between the river and the scree slopes. The high stage on the river is the result of copious rains in the headwaters: A SNOTEL (Monahan Flats), which is in the Sustina drainage but only a few miles from the upper Nenana watershed, measured 4.8 inches of rain September 13-21. The recent high freezing levels were likely a secondary factor.
Tina Graham photo from the Fairbanks-Daily News-Miner

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