Illinois River, Cherokee County Oklahoma-Photo by Ed Brocksmit
ILLINOIS RIVER BASIN -HIGH WATER ADVISORY - MAY 30th-31st WEEKEND (CORRECTED)
ISSUED: 4:30PM – FRIDAY AFTERNOON, MAY 29, 2020
Please use this version, previous version contained scrivener’s error re Barren Fork CreekConditions
Hello Scenic RiversNeighbors, Friends and Team,
ILLINOIS RIVER WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS ARE ABOVE NORMAL CONDITIONS TODAY. WATTS, CHEWY AND TAHLEQUAH GAGE SITES ARE CURRENTLY REPORTING WATER LEVELS APPROXIMATELY 2½ FEET ABOVE NORMAL. WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS WILL FALL SLOWLY OVER THE WEEKEND. IT’S RECOMMENDED THAT CHILDREN AND NON-SWIMMERS DO NOT FLOAT THIS WEEKEND. FURTHER, ADULTS LACKINGSTRONG PADDLING SKILLS SHOULD BE PAIRED WITH EXPERIENCED PADDLERS/FLOATERS UTILIZING CRAFTS OR WAIT TO FLOAT WHEN WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS HAVE RETURNED TO NORMAL CONDITIONS. PLEASE CONSULT WITH THE COMMERCIAL FLOTATION DEVICE OPERATION USED FOR THE MOST UP-TO-DATE RIVER AND WEATHER CONDITIONS BEFORE LAUNCHING ON A FLOAT TRIP.
FLINT CREEK STREAM GAGE IS REPORTING A FLOW APPROXIMATELY 4.5X’S FASTER THAN NORMAL THIS AFTERNOON.SWIMMERS AND WADERS SHOULD AVOID THE LOW-WATER DAM LOCATED BELOW THE US412 HWY BRIDGE IN SOUTHERN DELAWARE COUNTY. THESE HIGHER FLOWS CAN CREATE AN UNDERTOW BELOW THE DAM THAN CAN TRAP SWIMMERS AND WADERS IN A BOIL/RECIRCULATING WATER.
WATTS Gage-US59 Highway Bridge, 6.30 FEET at 2,600CFS flow/1,700,000GPM (Normal 485 CFS/218,250GPM, based 64 years of record);
CHEWY Gage-Hampton Bridge, 6.82 FEET at 3,210CFS flow/1,444,500GPM;
TAHLEQUAH Gage-US62 Highway Bridge, 9.00 FEET at 5,190CFS flow/2,335,500GPM (Normal 835CFS/375,750GPM, based on 84 years of record);
ELDON Gage-Barren Fork Creek/SH51 Highway Bridge, 8.63 FEET at 1,240CFS flow/558,000GPM (Normal 261 CFS/117,450GPM, based on 71 years of record); and,
KANSAS Gage-Flint Creek/US412 Highway Bridge, 7.09 FEET at 545 CFS flow/245,250GPM (Normal 114CFS/51,300GPM, based on 60 years of record).
IMPORTANT HIGH WATER CONSIDERATIONS:
Floaters, fishermen and swimmers exercise caution this weekend.
Wear life preservers, protective footwear and other suitable clothing.
Never swim or boat alone. Stay within sight of companions.
Boaters inform family members or others what stream reach you’re floating and when you plan to return from your trip.
Floaters beware, a number of flood events have occurred since the last float season. Fallen trees and debris may have accumulated in turns and runs that may pose navigational hazards.
If in doubt about the stream reach to be traveled, stop and get out on land to scout a safe pathway to use to float through, around meanders and other areas where debris and
fallen trees present strainers that let water pass through yet will trap and hold about/swimmer. In areas with swift water, portage your boat around navigational hazards. Please adhere to COVID-19 Guidance from Oklahoma State Department of Health and CDC when enjoying Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Areas. Attached above is a listing of water levels and flow/discharge for Illinois River Basin StreamGaging Stations (as of 3:30pm).
Additional updates will be published as river conditions warrant.
Vice-President for RiversOperations and Water Quality
Office Phone: 918-456-3251
Work Cell: 918-323-6825
P.O. Box 292
Tahlequah, OK 74465-0292
15971 N. Highway 10
Tahlequah, OK 74464
Please Take pause daily to pick up two pieces of trash and properly dispose or recycle the materials… The synergy of our efforts will help preserve and protect our state's aquatic and terrestrial environments. Thank you!