HURRICANE IRENE - AUGUST 28, 2011
The benekill (little brook) in front of our house at 131 Peekamoose Rd began to overflow
It came up rather rapidly.
Our front yard soon began to look like a big pond.
The water was creeping into the garage.
The stream was now about six foot deep, rather than the usual foot of water that flows through the front yard.
The rain began to come down heavier around 8 a.m.
We decided to walk up the road and check on our daughter and grandkids.
We knew we had to hurry and get back, or else we would not get back into the house.
The little brook was now level with the driveway /
It was not yet flooding the road as we headed up the road.
The water found its way around our new bridge that had been completed only two days before.
We passed the neighbors, and their bridge was under water.
Our daughter's house is in the distance, and it looked like they were okay.
The water from the rill coming down the mountainside was too much for the sluice pipe and it began to flow over the road.
It was turning into a dangerous situation very quickly.
As we turned back and saw our little cabin, we could see the water was surrounding it.
The old Fasch cabin was oaky, even though the water was rushing down the road.
I hesitated crossing through the moving water, but I was able to follow the yellow line.
We made it through.
We looked back and knew we had to make our visit short. Our daughter and the grandkids were okay at that time. It looked like the water was not going to go that high, but it did later on in the day. It surrounded their house too.
By the time we got home, only a half hour had gone by and the water was raging through our front yard. This was taken from our front porch.
Another picture from the front porch as the water began to flow over our bridge.
And within a few minutes after that, the back stream, the Rondout Creek met the waters of the little brook in front and we were completely surrounded by water, and not able to leave the house.
We retreated to the upstairs level of the house and I took this picture looking up toward our daughter. The water was quickly building and backing up toward their home, but there was nothing we could do. We had no phone sevice nor electric power.
I went to the front porch again, thinking I might get a better view of their house.
This was taken from the back porch looking down toward, Joe, our son's property. The Rondout Creek filled his back yard, too.
We watch the water rise around the statues in the grove.
The current began to strengthen, taking anything in its path along with it.
It looked like our bench swing was going to take a ride! Luckily Frank moved the canoe behind the cabin before we went up the road to Janna's.
This was taken out of the bedroom window upstairs just before the water reached the walls of the back of the house.
It is time to move the Jeep to somewhere higher.
It felt like we were actually moving, with the water rushing all around the house.
It was too late to put the lawn mower away. And the generator is in this niche too. It too was underwater.
No matter what window we went to, the water had surrounded us and was gaining in depth by the minute!
It is hard to say just how deep it was as the ground is irrecgular, but we knew we were safer in the house than attempting to walk through the water.
Not long after this picture, the bench went for a tumbling ride and was safely held in the branches of the old willow tree until we were able to get to it the next day.
This picture was taken just moments before our neighbor's bridge was washed out and their sluice pipe looked like it was a rocket as the force of the water pushed it up on end.
The pickup truck and the old Jeep were surrounded by water, but it wasn't as deep. For a while we thought for sure the canoe would take float and that we would lose it, but it just held its ground and didn't budge!
The John Deere lawnmower was in the strong current of water and got tussled around a bit.
The statuary was mostly under water. The water was up to Ho Tai's neck and Buddha was balancing on a little waterfall. I thought for sure all the precious stones that were placed by the Buddha statue would have disappeared. Call it Karma, or what you may, but the all the statues were fine, the stones were still there when the water receded and not one of our gnomes was missing!
This picture was taken by Joe's girlfriend, Sara. That white sign in the upstairs window is how we communicated with the kids, who were all able to get out to the road from their homes. We wrote large notes to each other, and used binoculars to read them, and we were able to let them know that we were warm and safe, and told them to go home and stay safe. They checked on us from the road about every half hour. We continued all afternoon with our notes, each time signing off with, "We love U!"
Sara also took this picture. This was where the benekill flows through Joe's yard between his house and ours.
It finally stopped raining about 2:30 or so and we all went for a walk to see how our new landscaped had been carved. This is Peekamoose Road near the 3 Goldens Convenience Store in Sundown.
Across the way, the goats and chickens all survived.
This was looking down toward the convenience store. Frank takes a moment to catch his breath and take in all the change!
Mud, Mud, Mud!!!
The new bridge going into Balace Road looked like a mess and was not passable. Chelsean and her husband live up on top and had to walk across the mountain and down Van Aken Road in order to get to their son, who had spent the night at his grandmother and grandfather's. They made it down safely.
3 Golden's Convenience Store was surrounded by sand. The force of the water pushed it a bit...
...but suprisingly, the Pepsi Cola machine was to the rescue!! When the Pepsi machine tipped over it created a wedge and stopped the building from going down stream.
The road washed out completely where another benekill crosses through a large culvert.
This is the scene from 3 Golden's Parking lot looking toward Annie Hnatiw's and where the road was washed out.
The Emergency Evacuation Team arrives and is ready for the rescue! About 4 pm or so the crew announced there was a mandatory emergency evacuation for all the residents who lived above the wash out on Peekamoose Road. This was the crew as they made it across the ravine.
Water undermined the foundation of several homes on Peekamoose Rd.
Connor's homes and the Sundown Camp and Bait Shop was ravaged.
But no one gave up hope! The day after Irene the Gail and Jim Connors and family were busy cleaning up and repairing. The first thing I noticed as we pulled in their driveway was their wishing well was back in place
THE AFTERMATH OF IRENE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN
Debris was everywhere along Rt. 28
Broken pavement and dirt exposed roads was common to just about every community.
Trees that had fallen were trapped downstream, adding to the havoc of the incessant rain.
The roadway next to Brio's in Phoenicia was covered with sand. The flowers did survive quite well.
A familiar site along Rt. 28
Guardrails were bent and twisted.
Toward afternoon on September 1st began to look a little gloomy again.
The platform for the generator that kept the Phoenicia Deli up and running was undermined, however the Nolte's fabulous son-in-law was able to stay ahead of the flood waters and build a deck for the platform to rest on, and the generator was able to run smoothly and keep all the regrigerators going.
The hardware store next to the deli was one of the few stores that was opened that day.
A house along Rt. 28 that was almost completely underwater ws getting help.
It looked more like a town out west than Boiceville in the Catskill Mountains! Sand and mud covered not only the streets and parking lots, but also the flors of shops like the Boiceville IGA Market and the Boiceville Florist.
Looking down Main Street in Phoenicia. This was the beginning of the Labor Day weekend, and without electric, there wasn't much to do. Normally this street, even in the dead of winter, is bustling with traffic and people.
Looking up Main Street in Phoenicia.
Mama's Boy, a popular eatery was also shut down.
The Phoenicia Deli keeps the sandbags nearby at all times. This was the third major flood in Phoenicia in less than a year.
A week before this was one of the busiest spots in town - Tinker Tubes! Now there didn't seem to be one building that was not damaged by Irene.
On the way up Rt 28, the railroad tracks from one of the scenic railways, was now in the creek. The tracks were destroyed in several places.
Side roads were being assessed by friends and neighbors, who were still in disbelief of the whole event.
Signs were posted all through the towns restricting use of property until further notice.
The picnic tables were saved by Tinker Town Tubes, but the sand and mud was everywhere.
With everyone running their generators, there was a shortage of regular fuel. The Valero station in Phoenicia happened to have fuel.
And at the end of the day, we finally were able to go back home and go through our wet basement and see what we could salvage. Not sure if his components were damaged from the water, but we will give the robot a week or so to dry out, and then see if the old guy is still up and running!
It was certainly an experience that I don't think any of us ever want to live through again. One thing is certain that we can all be thankful that we can now say, "We survived hurricane Irene!"