Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fort Worth's Trinity Falls Disappears Under Trinity River Flood

Last Thursday I went to Gateway Park because I thought Trinity Falls might be flowing loud and large. It was. Today, after seeing how high the Trinity River is due to all the water delivered by the Hurricane now known as Tropical Depression Hermine, I thought it'd be interesting to see how Trinity Falls handles a lot of water. Well, as you can see, the falls has disappeared, as has the dam/bridge that causes the falls. In the blogging from last Thursday I made note of the astonishing amount of litter piled up behind the row club's dock.

As you can see, today, the Trinity is exhibiting a bit more litter than last Thursday. The river has dropped quite a lot from its high mark. I was surprised, as were others checking out the river with me, that the water got so high.

In the above picture we are looking at the location of my infamous encounters with White Darth Vader Express Energy Services trucks, earlier in the year. A Barnett Shale water sucking operation was taking place in a location that would be way under water today. I wonder if the water sucking operation on the other side of the river that I made note of in last Thursday's blogging, managing to pull out in time?

I was not sure I wanted to walk over the litter pile to cross the bridge. But I strongly wanted to see what the boardwalk viewing area looked like inside Gateway Park. I forgot to mention Gateway Park is closed due to the flooding, both entries blocked, but the pedestrian entry from the Trinity Trails was not blocked. On my way to check out the river I saw Quanah Parker Park is closed and flooded. I do not recollect it being flooded before. This means River Legacy Park is badly flooded and my newly re-born mountain biking will be on hold for quite awhile, awaiting the BIG DRY UP.

As I nimbly made my way across the pile of litter I looked down to see dead fish. This was not pleasant. Dead fish quickly become malodorous. There were a lot of dead fish.

Usually in the view above you look at a huge pipe crossing the chasm above a creek. The huge pipe is now under water, with the creek flooded and full of an astonishing amount of litter and debris.

Normally, in the above view I would be looking at Trinity Falls, often hear it roaring, usually seeing someone on it, walking or biking. But, today the falls is flooded.

In the above picture we have crossed the pedestrian bridge and are in Gateway Park, looking at the flooded boardwalk that used to take you to various viewing platforms, with the boardwalk switchbacking down to the river's edge. Both Gateway Park boardwalks have been closed for quite some time, due to neglect and poor maintenance.

I don't quite understand the sign saying "AREA CLOSE TO THE PUBLIC." Yes, the public felt very close to these boardwalks, until they fell into disrepair, but why put this message on a sign? Very perplexing.

Equally perplexing is the disturbing amount of litter in the Trinity River. When I lived in Washington I lived in the Skagit Valley. The Skagit River flows through the Skagit Valley on its way to Puget Sound. The Skagit River is a much bigger river than the Trinity. The Skagit River can go into flood mode that makes what the Trinity is doing today seem minor. And yet, in all the times I saw the Skagit River flood, I do not recollect ever seeing litter line the edges of the dikes when the river receded. Lots of logs, yes. Litter no.

Now, this may have something to do with the fact that the Skagit River starts up in Canada and winds its way through the Cascade Mountains, having no contact with a highly populated zone until it reaches the Skagit Valley flats.

The Trinity River flows through mostly rural areas until it hits the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. Is that when it picks up all the litter? I really think an effort should be made to find out where all this Trinity River Texas litter comes from.


Anonymous said...

If this area is close to the public where are we supposed to put our tubes in the river?

Durango said...

I don't know where one is allowed to put ones tube in the Trinity without J.D. Granger's helpful input.

Anonymous said...

Durango--you bore me with daily weather reports, always unidentified critters/plants, sleeping schedules and big women antics. This is where you shine--the litter flood photos should be copyrighted- excellent!

Durango said...

Glad you liked the litter photos, Anonymous #2. Sorry my weather reports, lack of plant/critter knowledge, erratic sleeping and fat women woes are boring for you. I can't help myself. I'm a boring guy.