For those of us impatient folks here in Aniak and Chuathbaluk, it may still be a few days until the river breaks up. The River Watch patrol reports that there is still solid ice (still very blue) between Aniak and Chuathbaluk while ice downriver between Kalskag and Tuluksak is brown and appears very soft.
During much of the day there has been substantial movement in the vicinity of Napaimute, but there still seems to be stretches of solid ice downstream of Napaimute.
Mark Leary took this picture that is very suspicious. We all know that beavers like backing up water by building dams…but do they have anything to do the the jams that we see this time of year? Either that or they’re looking for a free ride down to Bethel to see relatives.
Mark says that the river rose 1.5 feet in a couple of hours after the Crooked Creed jam broke and that caused the semi-solid ice in the vicinity of the Alukaq (a.k.a. Holokuk) to break up, which sounded like gunshots.
As of 8:20 the ice was flowing past Napaimute at a rapid pace, punching it’s way through the solid ice located below Napaimute. But as of 8:35 the ice has now stopped; maybe those beavers are up to no good! The water is rising fairly quickly.
Stay tuned – we’ll keep you posted as best we can.