Dang it, not again…stay tuned to what’s coming down the river by scrolling to the bottom of this page and click on one of two flood information links the “NOAA Hydrological Prediction Service” and the more technically challenging “USGS Hwy 35 Gauge”.
Note: The NOAA “San Bernard Near Old Ocean” gauge and the “USGS Hwy 35" are the same, just different presentations. The Sweeny gauge that was monitored by Phillips 66 no longer exists.
To see NWS forecasts go to NWS Houston Radar.
Click on Storm Total
to see how much rain has fallen upriver.
Black's Ferry Bridge - Fri Jun 7th - 6:00 pm - 20.34 ft
Blacks's Ferry Bridge - Wed Jun 5th - 5:00 pm - 11.69 ft
RIVER UPDATES from
FOR's Backyard River Hydrologists (mostly reliable and sometimes scientific observations)
- Sat Jun 8th - 1:00 pm WE'RE NOT DONE YET
Low lying areas off the river downstream of FM 2611 (Churchill Bridge) are seeing rising water levels as flood water back flows through drainage ditches and culverts. FM 2918 is covered by water in several places and water is continuing to rise. Most of the entrances to subdivisions off 2918 are under water. This will be a situation in which the duration of the crest has a significant effect. River level at CR 631A is steady at approximately 6 ft MSL today. A lot of blocked culverts on FM 2918 as roadways become dams. At 1:00 pm the San Bernard River Near Boling flood gauge was reading flood stage at 37 ft. There's still a lot of water heading this way.
- Fri Jun 7th - 6:00 pm FINAL
The river has crested at a level of 20.33 ft. at Hwy 35 and will now recede slowly. Residents downriver should be aware that a very slight increase, a few inches or less, could still occur at your location until the crest reaches you and the river begins to recede. Note the high mark of this flood somewhere on your property. This amount of rain and river rise is typical of six or more flood events between the floods of '79 and Hurricane Harvey in 2017. It would require significantly more rainfall than we saw on Wednesday to raise the river much higher than you saw this week.
Boling is cresting now. Hwy 35 rose only 9" overnight to 20.19 ft. and is now rising only 1/2" to 3/4" per hour. NWS lowered their predicted crest at Hwy 35 twice yesterday from 26.5' to 26.4' and then down to 25'. It now appears it will crest three to four feet lower than that in the 21 to 22 ft. range and the NWS should be lowering their forecast significantly today.
Residents downriver should remember that after the Hwy 35 gauge crests, hopefully today or tonight, you might continue to see a very small rise until the river crests at your property. The very high predictions yesterday were alarming to many. In defense of the NWS they really don't have a good model for the tidal portion of the San Bernard. With data from the May flood and now this one, hopefully that model can be improved to give more realistic predictions in the future.
Until the water at Boling starts to recede ("San Bernard River near Boling" flood gauge now reads 38.72 ft and predicted to rise another foot) the river will not drop. It is currently flowing at 4 mph. So wherever you are looking at the river, things will not improve until the weekend...and my crystal ball has a big crack in it!
<<< The photo, left, was taken at the same time and same day as the “San Bernard near Old Ocean” flood gauge indicated that the height of the water was at 11.69 ft. a moderate flood stage. Black’s Ferry Bridge on FM 522 is located 3.5 miles south of the Old Ocean flood gauge. The tops of the fenders designating the channel under the bridge can barely be seen.
Almost all of the watershed above Hwy 35 has seen 8" and some areas as much as 15" of rainfall. The National Weather Service is predicting a 23 ft. rise at the Hwy 35 gauge. If that proves accurate, residents between the FM 521 and FM 2611 bridges could see 8 ft. or more. The forecast for Hwy 35 (Old Ocean area on map) will be refined as the rain stops and the actual levels upriver become apparent. This is by no means a Harvey event but it is strongly recommended that no boats be left in lifts above FM 2611 and anything loose be moved to an elevation 10-15 feet above normal river level. Residents above the FM 522 Black's Ferry bridge should prepare for a 15-18 ft. rise.
Conditions below FM 2611 Bridge:
On May 12th, the NOAA flood gauge San Bernard River near Old Ocean peaked at 16 ft. Water level for that event was estimated at 5 ft mean sea level (MSL). Top of bank at CR 631A is approximately 8 ft MSL (Harvey breached this). Water starts creeping over FM 2918 at Bernard Acres in excess of 5 ft MSL. Down river levels may also be impacted by a foot or two of tide.Can plot history from the USGS site.
Six inches of rain upriver so far and still raining. Make ready, it'll be coming this way!