“What does “action stage” mean?” asked Christy Yates on facebook about Paddling in the treetops 2023-02-13 and for real two years ago 2021-02-27 2023-02-13.
This is relevant to the upcoming Fourth Annual Mayor and Chairman’s Paddle, Withlacoochee River 2023-03-04.
I answered: Basically, watch out, the river is high. More formally: “Action Stage – the stage which, when reached by a rising stream, represents the level where the NWS or a partner/user needs to take some type of mitigation action in preparation for possible significant hydrologic activity. The type of action taken varies for each gage location. Gage data should be closely monitored by any affected people if the stage is above action stage.
See below for National Weather Service (NWS) terminology, which also defines several stages of flooding: minor, moderate, and major. That definitions web page is from Alaska, and it includes something called “bankfull stage” that I’ve never seen used around here. The rest of it is the same as in the Suwannee River Basin.
Right now paddling the Withlacooche River would be up in the branches like this picture, but higher. Don’t worry: the water level will probably go back down before March 4th. Continue reading