Sunday, July 10, 2011

July 10, 2011 - Perote Flash Flood

In a previous posting, I made observations about the water of Parras Valley.  Today, I would like to show you what happens on the hacienda when it rains in the mountains.  

Until recently the rain water poured down the mountains and down the arroyo, out to the desert. 

Our patron decided that the water could be put to much better use watering pecan trees.  All that 'free' water was too much to resist.  He built this structure to divert a small amount of water from the arroyo to the canal whose primary purpose is to bring the water from the Bat Cave Spring to the tanque.

This was a wonderful idea except there was way more water than could be handled in the canal or the tanque.  Much of the water just poured over the sides of the canal and the tanque quickly filled.  The rest of the water ran down the hill undirected and uncontrolled. 

The next effort involved a spill way to accommodate the excess water.  Water that runs down into the splash pit is then directed underground into irrigation canals.  The water that reaches this part of the system is actually put to use in a non-destructive way.
It's hard to imagine the amount or force of the water that comes in our flash floods.

The following three pictures show what happened to the dirt berm around the pecan tree in front of our house.

Below are some photos that show the front of our building.  Lottsa water!


One note about the 'free' water.  If there is no such thing as a free lunch, the same logic applies to 'free' water.  When water rushes through the hacienda, roads are washed out, adobe buildings are damaged, and everything the water touches is covered in mud.  The clean-up is not cheap.
It will be interesting to see what the next effort to control mother nature looks like.  I'll keep you posted.