Oregon Flooding And The Story Of How Fast Willamette Valley Rivers Can Rise

I cannot believe this shot.

You’re looking at feet of water racing through a street in downtown Salem on Thursday night January 19, 2011.

This was the overflow of Mill Creek and it’s created something you could go whitewater rafting on. The water was racing into a parking garage. I home nobody was parked in there!

Incredible Rain Totals, Rivers Shoot Up Fast

Here are a few 48 hour rain totals after two days worth of deluge. The central & southern Willamette Valley was hardest hit.

  • 6.02″ Turner, Oregon Rain
  • 5.74″ Corvallis, Oregon Rain
  • 3.76″ Salem, Oregon Rain
  • 3.21″ Portland, Oregon Rain

Now, check out these incredible jumps on creeks and rivers as a result of this rain. Just follow the blue line…that’s your river level.

This is Johnson Creek in Portland

This is the Clackamas River at Oregon City

This is the Willamette River at Salem

We have more rain on the way…but totals should be low enough, most places, that rivers keep dropping, except for the Willamette. It crests in Oregon City on Saturday night. That means a busy weekend near Clackamette Park when people come to check out the minor flooding that will cover much of the park. Maybe I’ll see you down there!


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