Sep 21, 2018

Swamp's preferred routes

Water doesn't just flood ...

It also flows across the swamp.

Map of the swamp's topography:
Blue indicates low areas and brown high.
Above are some of its preferred routes.

Sep 19, 2018

Don't blame the culvert!

This culvert flows at capacity during the wet season.

Unfortunately that capacity is not enough.

Culvert to Deep Lake Strand
near Fire Prairie Trail
looking west

But don't blame the culvert.

The solution is more culverts in the same spot ...

And a better plug in the canal downstream.

Sep 17, 2018

Other extreme

Sweetwater during deep drought
as seen through a culvert
looking downstream, May 2009

Sep 15, 2018

Sep 14, 2018

Remember When: Loop River?

Remember the days ...

When Loop Road regularly over-topped with water?

Canoeing Loop Road, fall 2005
looking south at bend in the road
to Sweetwater

The reason?

Over time the culverts that conveyed water under it clogged up and collapsed, causing water on the upstream side of the road to pile up (i.e. pool) on the upstream side of the road -- and overtop the road surface during peak water, especially after a big storm.  Those events also caused the road surface to wash away, especially the fine material, leaving behind a loose assemblage of larger rocks. In spots, the road resembled a river bottom as a result.

New culverts were installed in 2008 in tandem with raising the road where it had washed out.

These days water flows under, not over, the limestone section of Loop Road.

Sep 13, 2018

How sweetwater got spread out

Yes, Sweetwater Strand changes with the seasons ...

But does it change over the decades, too?

New culverts in 2008 helped spread the water out across the full length of road.

Although that didn't matter when Irma came to town last year.

Can you see that new high water mark in the graph above?

Sep 12, 2018

Can you see the gator?

Neither did I.

Fortunately, I was as high up on the road as the gator was submerged below.

Somehow I get the feeling
the gator saw me

Or in other words, we never crossed paths.

Sep 11, 2018

Sluggish sweetwater

Remember the days when Loop Road regularly over-topped,

And water gushed through Sweetwater Strand?

There's always something happening
at Sweetwater Strand

That was before the new culverts went in ...

Helping it to spread out.

These days Loop Road is always dry as a result.

Sep 9, 2018

Fire bush at Sweetwater

Here's a plant I've been admiring for a decade.

Not the cypress, but the fire bush in front.

As seen on the road berm
at Sweetwater Strand
It's beautiful to look at from a distance,

Or close up.

It's a native plant

Some pretty yellow butterflies seemed to like it, too.