Flash Flood – August 11, 2016

We got 6 inches of rain overnight, and it was still raining hard in the morning.  Our little creek – Little Waumandee Creek – turned into a rushing river, about half the width of the valley.  It caused lots of destruction.  It washed out our driveway, and most of the other driveways up and down the valley.  It washed out big pieces of Highway 88.  The Buffalo River and smaller creeks in other valleys also overflowed and caused more damage.  Most roads in Buffalo and Trempeleau Counties are closed.

Here are our photos and videos of the flood.

View from the trail camera at the creek – 7:15 am

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This is looking south out our driveway at about 8:30am.

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Looking upstream

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Little Waumandee Creek – normally it’s a small, narrow creek, and we can’t see it because it’s lower than its banks.


This is a stream that runs along next to the driveway – normally it’s very narrow and winds quietly down through the wetland to join Little Waumandee Creek.

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Here’s a video of that same flooded stream.


Stream running through willows along the driveway.

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One of our – normally dry – intermittent stream beds in the woods.

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The Frog Pond – normally completely dry in the summer.

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Later in the day – the creek is down, but still moving a lot of water.

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The driveway has emerged.

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The remains of the driveway over the culvert.

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Mike inspecting  – planning his tractor project.

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Day 2 – August 12  The water is back to normal.  The lighter areas in the flat part of the valley show where the water ran through.

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The stream is mostly clear, and almost back to normal.  All the rocks from our driveway are now making a rapids for the trout.

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Mike flew the drone today, and took video.  The lighter areas are where the water flowed – at least half the width of the valley.


Here are 3 photos showing before, during, and after the flood:

This is the normal view from the trail camera at the creek – taken 5/1/2016.

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8/11/2016 – trail camera view the morning of the flood

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8/12/16 – trail camera view after the flood

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Mike starting work on the driveway.

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Here’s the ‘before’ driveway photo – 8/11/2016

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And after Mike’s first day of work – 8/12/2016.  The tractor or an ATV can get out now.  More work to do before we’ll try the car.

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We made another interesting discovery – our only other flash flood experience was exactly 6 years ago – August 13, 2010.   It was very similar, but not as bad – not as much water or destruction. This is the scene at the culvert that day.



A good end to the adventure….we drove the Tesla out safely this afternoon.  We got all the way to Alma – with only a few waits for repair vehicles.  And no holes in the roads – the highway guys have been working very hard!

The driveway – ready to go.

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The Tesla headed out.

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