Tuesday, February 5, 2013

January Ice Jam Photos

Veteran Salmon River Watcher & NWS Weather Spotter Dale Ford has more than 33 years experience photographing and describing ice jams.  Ford is Lemhi County's most informed ice jam observer.  With his encyclopedic notes, Ford can compare and contrast any given ice jam event with both recent and long ago predecessors.  He understands and can explain the complex dynamics of ice jam formation and behavior.

Ford's decades of up close and personal examination of ice jams have given him a unique perspective about how each ice jam event evolves in relationship to winter climate and valley-influenced temperature inversion patterns.

Currently, Ford is keeping an eye on an approximately 20-mile-long ice jam stretch from Ellis upriver to near the US Hwy 93 bridge at Challis.  Long ice jams are much more common in the North Fork to Salmon City area than they are in the Ellis-Challis vicinity.  There is concern that warmer temperatures might break up the upriver ice jam and send it downriver with potential to cause ice flow clogging as the river narrows near Salmon City.

Below is a short video slide show using Ford's photos of the January 2013 ice jam conditions on The Salmon & Lemhi Rivers.  A few of the photos are shown here full size.  THANK YOU, Dale Ford, for sharing your incredible ice jam knowledge and perspectives with us.  We look forward to your continued reports as this ice jam season continues to evolve.

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