Save the Illinois River, Inc.
24369 E 757 Rd.
Tahlequah, OK 74464-1949
(918) 284-9440

Illinois River High Water Advisory

Save the Illinois River, Inc. | Environment | May 30, 2020

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Illinois River, Cherokee County Oklahoma-Photo by Ed Brocksmith

ILLINOIS RIVER BASIN -HIGH WATER ADVISORY - MAY 30th-31st WEEKEND (CORRECTED) ISSUED: 4:30PM – FRIDAYAFTERNOON, MAY 29, 2020Please use thisversion, previous version contained scrivener’s error re Barren Fork CreekConditions  Hello Scenic RiversNeighbors, Friends and Team, ILLINOIS RIVER WATERLEVELS AND FLOWS ARE ABOVE NORMAL CONDITIONS TODAY.WATTS, CHEWEY ANDTAHLEQUAH GAGE SITES ARE CURRENTLY REPORTING WATER LEVELS APPROXIMATELY 2½ FEETABOVE NORMAL.WATER LEVELS AND FLOWSWILL FALL SLOWLY OVER THE WEEKEND. IT’S RECOMMENDED THATCHILDREN AND NON-SWIMMERS DO NOT FLOAT THIS WEEKEND. FURTHER, ADULTS LACKINGSTRONG PADDLING SKILLS SHOULD BE PAIRED WITH EXPERIENCED PADDLERS/FLOATERS UTILIZINGRAFTS OR WAIT TO FLOAT WHEN WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS HAVE RETURNED TO NORMALCONDITIONS.PLEASE CONSULT WITH THECOMMERCIAL FLOTATION DEVICE OPERATION USED FOR THE MOST UP-TO-DATE RIVER ANDWEATHER CONDITIONS BEFORE LAUNCHING ON A FLOAT TRIP.  FLINT CREEK STREAM GAGE ISREPORTING A FLOW APPROXIMATELY 4.5X’S FASTER THAN NORMAL THIS AFTERNOON.SWIMMERS AND WADERS SHOULD AVOID THE LOW-WATER DAM LOCATED BELOW THE US412 HWYBRIDGE IN SOUTHERN DELAWARE COUNTY. THESE HIGHER FLOWS CANCREATE AN UNDERTOW BELOW THE DAM THAN CAN TRAP SWIMMERS AND WADERS IN ABOIL/RE-CIRCULATING WATER. CURRENT CONDITIONS:WATTS Gage-US59 Highway Bridge, 6.30 FEET at 2,600CFS flow/1,700,000GPM (Normal 485CFS/218,250GPM, based 64 years of record);CHEWEY 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 261CFS/117,450GPM, based on 71 years of record); and,KANSAS Gage-Flint Creek/US412 Highway Bridge, 7.09 FEET at 545CFS flow/245,250GPM (Normal 114CFS/51,300GPM, based on 60 years of record).

 

IMPORTANT HIGH WATERCONSIDERATIONS:

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

fallentrees present strainers that let water pass through yet will trap and hold aboat/swimmer. In areas with swift water, portage your boat around navigationalhazards.

Please adhere to COVID-19 Guidance from Oklahoma State Department of Health and CDC when enjoying Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Areas.

 

Attached above is alisting of water levels and flow/discharge for Illinois River Basin StreamGaging Stations (as of 3:30pm).

 

Additional updates will bepublished as river conditions warrant.

 

Thank you,

 

Ed Fite

Vice-President for RiversOperations and Water Quality

 

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Email: efite@grda.com

Office Phone: 918-456-3251

Work Cell: 918-323-6825

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 292

Tahlequah, OK 74465-0292

Physical Address:

15971 N. Highway 10

Tahlequah, OK 74464

Pleasetake pause daily to pick up two pieces of trash and properly dispose or recyclethe materials… the synergy of our efforts will help preserve and protect ourstate’s aquatic and terrestrial environments. Thank you!