I looked at the blog record for storms of 2009 and found the “first big storm of 2009” entry. During that storm in February, the creek went from 1.8′ to 2.8′ with just 2-3 inches of rain. We got 9 inches that month at the Highlands Peak weather station.
Well, on October 13 alone, we recieved 9.6 inches at Highlands Peak and 5.3 at Whale Point. The NOAA rain gauge on Mining Ridge reported 22 inches fell from 3am the 13th to 7pm the 14th. This seems outrageous but no word yet if that was inaccurate. The level of the gauge pool at Big Creek went from 1.4′ to 5.5′. Big Creek was dark chocolate color while Devil’s Creek was milky brown. All over the banks of the creek was foamy bubbles. Here is a profile of the creek level over four days spanning the storm.
This storm originated as a cyclone off the southern tip of Japan and made it’s way across the Pacific to hit the California coast. The temperature during the storm was about 58 degrees F and even went up to 62 just after the rain stopped. The maximum wind gust at Whale Point was 46 mph and at Highlands Peak was 62 mph. The top of one of the cypress trees at the Gatehouse broke off. It was impressive to see that any of the alders and willows even had leaves at all afterwards.
Here’s a picture of the beach at 7am on the morning of the 14th.
The weather on the 14-15th was sunny and humid. There was a swarm of termites hatching everywhere. The phoebes, bluebirds and bats had their fill.