High temps could lead to RF River flooding
Above-average temperatures during the next few days prompted a flood-advisory warning Saturday for the Roaring Fork River.
The National Weather Service in Grand Junction said the Roaring Fork was at 3.8 feet at 9 a.m. Saturday and was expected to rise to 4.1 feet by midnight Saturday night and again around midnight tonight. So-called “bankful stage” is 4 feet, while flood stage is 5 feet, according to a statement from the weather service.
At five feet, “flooding of lowland areas adjacent to the river can be expected in Aspen,” according to the statement.
The high in Aspen on Saturday was predicted to be 87 degrees, while today was expected to be 86 degrees and Monday 90 degrees, according to Accuweather.com
Those high temperatures “will lead to continued snowmelt from the high mountains over the next several days,” the weather service said.
“River flows will continue to remain high from the snowmelt and from diversion management upstream,” the statement says.
That means people should avoid flooded areas and unstable riverbanks and use caution when walking near waterways, according to the statement. Boaters, rafters and kayakers were urged to use caution and expect hazards, strong currents and cold water.
The flood advisory is in effect until Monday afternoon.
A 58-year-old Maryland man on vacation in Aspen fell out of a raft Wednesday in the Slaughterhouse Falls section of the Roaring Fork River below Cemetery Lane and died. The cause of his death won’t be available for about two weeks, said Eric Hansen, assistant Pitkin County coroner.
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Emergency communication technicians didn’t follow protocol, causing 30 minutes of confusion for thousands of Garfield County residents.