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Near Record River Crest Floods Rainbow Park

High runoff on the Arkansas River east of Florence has sent flood water across the county road in several spots near the Rainbow Park Dairy.

Residents in Rainbow Park along County Road 119 east of Florence are no strangers to flood waters from the Arkansas River, but that doesn’t make it any easier to cope with near record levels of flooding.  Flood waters from the Arkansas have covered hay fields and corrals around the Rainbow Park Dairy and several homeowners report their crawl spaces are filling with water from rising groundwater tables.

Minor flooding occurs on the Arkansas in the Cañon City and Florence areas when the river gauge reaches a ten foot level.   The National Weather Service in Pueblo reports the peak on the runoff through Cañon City was reached last Saturday afternoon at a level of 10.14 feet.   According to historical records, that river height would rank it second on the list of historical river crests exceeded only by a level of 10.9 feet on June 18, 1995.

Tom & Linda Miller managed to get their hay cut in Rainbow Park in between rain storms only to have flood waters from the Arkansas River ruin this first cutting of hay.

There is very little that homeowners and farmers can do but to wait for the water to recede.   The National Weather Service is predicting a very slow drop in river levels over the next five days.   But the river is expected to drop by only about six inches by Friday afternoon.

Residents of the area are particularly watching the skies for any threat of thunderstorms.   Additional heavy rain dumping into the river would only add to the flooding headaches.

There is a foot of water in the crawl space of this Rainbow Park residence east of Florence which sits on the banks of the flooding Arkansas River. It's estimated the river was running at 5,600 cubic feet per second when this picture was taken the afternoon of June 16th.