A walk along the river puts the January flood into perspective - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

A walk along the river puts the January flood into perspective

Pointing out the waterline of the January flood Pointing out the waterline of the January flood

The last weekend of January was beautiful with sunshine and temperatures in the 70s so, my wife and I decided to take walk along the Mississippi River at Harbor Town.  It was our first venture along the river since the Mississippi River flood earlier that month.  

I could see the line along the levee where sticks and pieces of driftwood had gathered as the river reached its highest point, which was still almost 10 feet below the last flood of 2011. In that flood, the water reached street level at Greenbelt Park and city engineers had to build up the levee to keep water from pouring into homes that lined that street.  

In comparison, this flood didn't match up, as the river crested at 39.59 ft on January 8 ranking 9th on the list of historic crests in Memphis.

However, surveying what that flood left behind was rather impressive.  

There is a tremendous amount of sand along the river, making some areas look like a beach leading to water's edge. There is also a lot of driftwood piled up along the river's edge ranging in size from small- and medium-sized branches to whole trees.  

There is also a well defined water mark on all of the trunks of all the trees that line the river clearing showing where the water reached its peak.  I stood by one of those trees where the water line was still three to four feet above my head and the tree itself several feet above the current river stage.  That put this year's flood into perspective for me on just how high the water rose and how much water it took to get it to that level. 

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