Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Use Caution when on the Connecticut River!

David L. Deen River Steward 
Connecticut River Watershed Council

Our best considered advice at this time is to stay off the main river and its tributaries until they clear and are no longer running brown. The tributary rivers are falling as is the main river but the real issue is that the main river has not yet cleared of mud and silt. Many of the tributaries would be clear now under natural conditions but where there is in stream repair work going on they continue to run cloudy and brown making the main river cloudy and brown. The Black River the Williams, the West and Saxtons River all run muddy 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. while the work is going on rebuilding roads and other infrastructure.

That is an important consideration because a huge amount of debris floated into the main river from the flooded tributaries creating new sweeps and snags from trees, parts of houses, bridges, cars etc. If the water is muddy you cannot see into the water to avoid the snags and because of the washed out septic systems, oil drums and other nasty stuff swept into the river you do not want to tip over into the water.

I know that is disappointing news but I have delivered it to several groups. We want people to love  and enjoy the river but we just need to wait for the river to clear up for safe transit, heal itself of the pollutants and for ongoing clean up efforts to remove the most damaging of the stuff from the river.

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