Deep Water Re-entry; Be Prepared For Your River Conditions



I drove over to the USGS station at Riverview, AL yesterday and the Conecuh River is UP, but totally within mean stats for March. The river level was 13.44ft. I checked the May 1-4 historical data for May To the Bay (5/1-5/4) and here’s how it breaks down:


STATION ID#           DATE           OBSERVATION           MEAN
USGS 02374250 2011-05-01                   8.96 A                  8.97 A
USGS 02374250 2011-05-02                  8.90 A                  8.91 A
USGS 02374250 2011-05-03                  8.90 A                  8.89 A
USGS 02374250 2011-05-04                  8.92 A                  8.93 A

USGS 02374250 2012-05-01                  9.15 A                  9.17 A
USGS 02374250 2012-05-02                  8.89 A                  8.96 A
USGS 02374250 2012-05-03                  8.82 A                  8.67 A
USGS 02374250 2012-05-04                  9.42 A                  9.20 A

USGS 02374250 2013-05-01                  11.22 A                  11.10 A
USGS 02374250 2013-05-02                  11.75 A                  11.42 A
USGS 02374250 2013-05-03                  11.98 A                  12.14 A
USGS 02374250 2013-05-04                  11.83 A                  11.71 A

USGS 02374250 2014-05-01            19.99 P              20.06 P
USGS 02374250 2014-05-02            18.77 P              19.21 P
USGS 02374250 2014-05-03            16.89 P              17.33 P
USGS 02374250 2014-05-04            15.65 P              15.76 P

Notice there’s been an increase year over year in the May gauge height, though the mean avg is 11.73ft (latest available data 2009-2013) the river on any given year can be much higher or lower. The huge spike in 2014 was that storm that took out part of Scenic Highway in Pensacola. The possibility of sudden swift water on the Conecuh River is REAL and water conditions can change without much notice. On the open water in a kayak it’s very important to pay attention to the details, tie up all your gear, and make sure you’re practiced on deep water re-entry skills.

Here’s PaddleGuy to help you get started with your kayak safety skills. Practice is of utmost importance, but always make sure you have a spotter with you when you practice any deep water or open water skills.

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