Good news! Finally the water levels have topped out and overnights still look possible for the upcoming weekend. Sandbars will be limited, so be prepared to share a sandbar with another group if you are unable to find one all to yourself but on the bright side you may make a friend or two! The river level should be stable by Saturday night so you wont have to worry about water rising and creeping into your tent as you sleep. If you and your group are still iffy about the conditions, send us an email and we can reschedule for sometime later this season or give you a full refund.
Now that most of Wisconsin has emerged from last night's storm, we're starting to see the impact on water levels. Northern Wisconsin has been dumping water into the river for about 12 hours now and all of the tributaries heading south are starting to do the same. We're going to see a large jump in water levels, possibly up to 20kcfs (less than 15kcfs is ideal but we'll give the option for trips to around 17kcfs). While it's too soon to know where water levels will top out, I'm currently more concerned about the when.
River forecasts have been moving up the timing for the past 24 hours. We're now starting to see actual numbers coming out of the upstream gauges, Castlerock in particular. With where it's at right now, we'll be close to that 15kcfs mark and that'll begin to arrive here on our stretch of river sometime Saturday and rise throughout the day/evening. What I'm really waiting to see is if we have another big jump come out of that Castlerock dam. It's possible they are going big and early in order to moderate flows for the rest of the weekend which means water levels will be up, but not so much that you'll lose all the sandbars in the middle of the night. Either way, we won't know for sure until 10pm tonight when whatever changes happen after that won't get to us until Sunday when most people are off the water.
If you've got a trip this weekend and you're wondering how this impacts you - if numbers stay as they are we'll be okay to send out trips. Make sure to choose your sandbar campsite well. Current forecasts would have water levels start to stabilize by late Saturday evening. Worth having a member of your group check the river every couple hours Saturday night so you don't wake up to any surprises (paddle or stick stuck into the ground at waters edge can help you track the change in depth. Definitely pull your canoes up to your tent, and maybe even tie them to the tent. It's one of the busiest weekends of the year so be mentally prepared to cozy up with other groups camping out on the higher sandbars. Check back here Friday morning (you can also expect an email update) to see if anything has gotten worse. Given the uncertainty and rising waters overnight, trips can also be cancelled for a full refund (reply to your confirmation emails to do so).
The graph below is the one I'll be watching today - waiting to see if/when we jump higher than the 12kcfs it's currently at before 10pm tonight. I'll be out on the water this weekend with a group as well so this time we're really all in it together.
The Derecho storms that just raged through here are definitely throwing a wrench into the conditions this weekend. Water levels are going to be rising. How much, and when, are still TBD so we are keeping a close eye and will be back soon to post a more concrete update.
2 weekends of fantastic weather in a row! River level is low and perfect for sandbars. Its going to be hot out there so make sure to pack your sunscreen and plenty of water. Excited to get everyone on the river!
Update on the previous weekend post:
Water levels are lower than expected! Looks like it will be a beautiful weekend out on the river. Cant wait to get everyone out there!
Good News, Weather is looking perfect for this upcoming weekend. Low to mid 80's and sun for the foreseeable future. Bad news, after the big storm that came through Wisconsin on Wednesday the water level is going to be coming up for Friday and Saturday. Levels are projected to be right at the threshold of limited sandbars. As of right now this weekend still looks good for overnights but we will continue to monitor the water level to see if anything changes.
After two weeks of thunderstorms and high-water, we're starting to get back to normal! We're looking at mid 70's this weekend which is a nice break from 90 degree days with 100% humidity. Nights on the river will be a little bit chillier so make sure to pack some warm clothes!
It looks like water levels have dropped by a good portion up at the Castle Rock dam. Its looking like water levels will begin to drop significantly on Saturday night leading into Monday morning. This should give some of you campers who are still braving the high waters a little bit more reassurance. However, the water level will still be quite high at the start on Saturday so be prepared and don't be choosy with a sandbar if you still plan on going out!