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Forums » Alberta & the Canadian Rockies » URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

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drfumblefinger

URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

Just to let anyone who is traveling to this region soon know that two days ago there were heavy, freak rainstorms in the region.  Parts of the Canadian Rockies received 8 inches of rain in 24 hours, that on top of a melting snowpack in the alpine areas.  The Bow River is badly flooded.  Canmore is a disaster area, isolated because the Transcanada is closed both ways.  From what I've heard, Banff is okay but isolated.   The Transcanada Highway beween Golden and the Rockies is closed. 

Calgary, down river of Banff, had a flash flood go through yesterday and on into right now.  Thousands of residents have been evacuated from their homes.  Stampede grounds flooded, with the Stampede only 2 weeks away.  The Bow River has crested but it might be a while before it recedes.  I live close to the Bow but fortunately high enough that my home is dry.  Power is out at my place this morning, though but the Bow River is at least 10 feet verticle from the foundations of my home.

Point to all this is to advise people to check before they come to Calgary and the Canadian Rockies in the next few weeks.  I suspect that within a week, things will be fairly normalized but a number of bridges are damaged and that will take time to sort out. 

 

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RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by /bio/johnt »

Glad to hear your dry. More than 100,000 homes on evacuation notice. THe largest such notice in Canadian history I understand? Freaky for a place that normally gets about a foot of moisture for the entire year. Saw some of the videos of Canmore and the mountain passes.

 

Here is some video foranyone interested.

 

 http://www.theweathernetwork.com/news/articles/city-of-calgary-declares-local-state-of-emergency-amid-rising-water-levels-/8078/

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drfumblefinger

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

Thanks for the extra info, John.  I'd say that there's another 6-10' (2-3 meters) of depth to the river today above what the video shows.

"The storm of the century" they say.  Let's hope so.

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drfumblefinger

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

In Response to Re: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded:[QUOTE]

Best wishes.  I just caught up with the news.  


Posted by mushroom[/QUOTE]

Thank you, Mushroom.  In the past 24 hours, the level of the Bow River has held steady, which is the good news.  When I walked out there this morning, it had dropped maybe a foot, but they will be releasing some water from an upriver dam, so expect it to hold at this level for a few more days.  At least today is a nice sunny day so far, which helps things dry out and drain.

Evacuation notices remain in effect.   Power still off in many places, including in my home.

A few photos of the flooding from Fish Creek Provincial park, near where I live.

Normally the Bow river flows between the far cliff and the trees in the distance.  

The trees are half submerged.  The path I like to hike and bike on is in this field of view, but is probably under 3 meters of water.

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drfumblefinger

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

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drfumblefinger

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

Cleaning up from a flood is a mess.  Everything that was submerged is wet and muddy.  Somethings are easy to salvage -- others less so (eg. mattresses).  Mostly everything needs a good cleaning and drying.

I think the Stampede will be on schedule.  The river is receeding to day.  Once the water is off the grounds, it will dry fairly quickly.  Buildings will be cleaned, a fairlyeasy project as most have concrete floors.    But we'll see.  It all depends on how fast the water levels receed.

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mitchtwin

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by mitchtwin »

Thanks so much for the updates. So glad to hear that things are maybe turning a corner for the region, but so very sorry for all those that have been affected by the flooding. Our prayers are with everyone that is involved in rescue, recovery, clean up and rebuilding efforts.

We have been planning a family vacation to the Rockies and the Calgary Stampede for months, so have been watching the Calgary stations. In the wake of such devastaion, we are, of course wondering about the wisdom of coming to the region, so keep the updates coming. 

Mitchtwin

midwestern Ontario

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drfumblefinger

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by drfumblefinger »

Hi Mitchtwin,

The Bow River dropped at least 5 feet overnight, a great relief to all, and lots of people are being allowed back into their homes today.  But the river is still very high and moving very quickly.  But the trend is good.  It's a bright sunny warm and windy day, the wind of course helping dry things out.

For the coming weeks, I wouldn't visit here unless you have firm reservations that would cost you a lot of money to cancel.  It will take a little while to see how the road infrastructure is throughout the mountains.  I've heard a lot of small roads and bridges in the Rockies are washed out.  No one has been able to get to any of the trails yet to really know how they are.

My general advice would be plan a trip elsewhere this year if you were planning on coming in July.  Come next year.  The Stampede is less than 2 weeks away and I'm sure they'll have it.  I think Calgary will be in reasonable shape then but I'm less sure of the Rockies.  If someone can wait as long as August, I think we'll have a better understanding of what's happening then.   The Rockies are certainly a wonderful place to visit, especially with a family.  I recall seeing them for the first time as a boy, with awe and wonder.   But I'd have a plan "B" in place just in case for this year. 

In your specific situation, especially if you have firm Stampede flight or ticket reservations, consider coming to Calgary, then heading south towards Glacier National Park in Montana and Yellowstone, looping back through the Black Hills in South Dakota.  Lots of interesting stuff there to do this year.  So far as I know, Yellowstone and Glacier are in good shape.

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RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by /bio/johnt »

Thats too bad Doc. For someone like you who is quite an intrepid traveller thats quite a statement. I'm having such a very hard time actually believing the scenes I see. 

 

Have you got your power back?

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mitchtwin

RE: URGENT: Southern Canadian Rockies and Calgary badly flooded

by mitchtwin »

Hi Doc! 

Glad to hear that the floodwaters are receding and that the clean up efforts can begin, at least in parts of the city.

Hard to imagine that the city will actually be prepared to host an event like the Stampede in a few days, but I guess we'll see... In the meantime we are trying to figure out a plan B that works for us. We were already planning to go to Yellowstone on the way home, but Glacier is a fab suggestion especially if we might miss out on Banff and area.  If we could fit in a bit of time to re-visit fav spots in the Black Hills, it would also be great.

Take care. Hope things steadily improve in Calgary and points west.

Thanks for the input,

Mitchtwin

 

 

 

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