Sunday, January 6, 2013

Waitaki Valley

Flooding of the Waitaki River

With over a half of metre of rain falling on the main divide over the last week has caused considerable flooding of the major rivers of Canterbury, namely the Rakia, Rangitata and Waitaki Rivers.  Because of the huge amount of water filling the lakes it has been necessary to release water resulting in magnificent flows coming over the spillways.
Today Doug and I went for a drive to take a look up the Waitaki River valley where there are three dams spilling water,....Waitaki, Avimore and Benmore.   The most impressive is the Benmore Dam.

Benmore Spillway - Where water meets cloud, incredible amount of water and spray.  Had to keep a safe distance

Summer water skiing in Loch Laird, with spillway in distance.
Notice how high the Loch is with the trees being submerged.

I have only seen this once before, many years ago, when we were enjoying summer water sking

The view from the top of the earth dam (built about 1960), what a vista.
Loch Laird is to the right where the water branches off making for a calmer water.

Waitaki Dam, the first dam built on the Waitaki River.  Started building this in 1928,
the building structure is a giveaway of its age.

The spillway at Benmore dam, looking down towards Loch Laird.

1 comment:

everyday_art said...

Such an impressive record of this event - it must have been awesome.