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Monday, June 14, 2010

Deadly Flooding in Arkansas Campground


As you probably remember, George and I went to Arkansas in March. The first place we visited was the beautiful Ouachita Mountains in southwestern Arkansas. We were searching for waterfalls (which we found). We totally fell in love with that beautiful rustic area of Arkansas. Before going any farther with today's post, please click HERE and glance through our pictures from that trip.

We passed by the neatest campground (Albert Pike Recreation Area) on our way up the mountain. I remarked at the time what a neat campground that was. There are various creeks plus two rivers in that area (the Caddo River and the Little Missouri River). WELL--this past Friday, heavy rains caused the normally quiet rivers to climb out of their banks during the night. Around dawn, floodwaters barreled through the Albert Pike Recreation Area, a 54-unit campground that was packed with vacationing families who were probably still asleep when their tents began to fill with water.

The rivers rose from 3.5 feet to over 23.5 feet between midnight and 6 a.m. The toll from this horrible flash flood rose on Sunday to NINETEEN as a grim search through remote woodland turned up another body. Police would not give the sex or age of the latest victim, but six young children and twelve adults were already known to have perished, swept from their beds in the dead of night by a lethal torrent of water.

They don't know exactly how many others are missing --but bodies have been recovered as much as 8 miles downstream from the campground. This has been so sad for me I guess because we were just there ---and I have a special love for people who enjoy camping and hiking. All but two of the victims came from out-of-state to camp and hike and fish in the rugged beauty of the national forest, located near the Ozark Mountains.

I pulled a few pictures of the flood from the internet and will share them with you below. Please pray for the families of all of the victims. This freak flood is just horrible to think about.

















You can tell how powerful that water was. Those vehicles were batted around like toys. One time when my first husband and our boys and I were camping in the Smokies, we had some extremely heavy rain ---and had to move our camp sight away from the creek. But-- other than getting wet, we didn't have any problems like they had in Arkansas. Mother Nature can do some unbelievable things, can't she?????
Again, I ask you to remember those victims and their families.

Bet it will be a long time before those gravel roads which George and I traveled on in that area will be accessible again. I'm sure the roads have been washed out... What a shame---the whole tragedy!

Hugs,

P.S. Be sure and read George's Senior Moments blog today. It is excellent I think. Click HERE.

44 comments:

Lucy said...

Mother Nature! She can really pull a few buttons at times. I feel bad for all those people.

Tabor said...

River canyon floods are usually quick and murderous. I remember one devastating killer flood in Colorado on a river growing up. It washed away many cabins and killed people. I wonder if they had any warning about storms in the area?

Darla said...

Water is something to be respected for sure. This is devastating..

Pam said...

It is just awful!

Arkansas Patti said...

The power of that water is mind boggling. How terrible. Those families have been in my prayers.
We had a bad flood here a few years ago and my neighbor lost his brother. It took over a week to find him.
Last week, practically the whole state was under flood warnings when I went to sleep though we only got 1/2 an inch. There was no cell service in that area so unless they were awake and listening to the radio, they had no warning.
Nature can be beautiful but also very violent.

Catherine said...

Mother Nature sure can show us her strength can't she. Unstoppable!

Warm thoughts,
xo Catherine

Thoughtfully blended hearts said...

I had been wondering just where this was located and you answered my questions...such a sad event...our prayers for the families!!!

Sunny said...

What a terrible tragedy, I have been hearing about it on the news. My thoughts and prayers to the families.
☼ Sunny
My son is here for a few more days, I'm hoping the sun will show up soon!

Dar said...

My prayers have been with the families and the community. What a tragedy for folks out with their families enjoying nature. We get the tornados and high winds, but in our immediate area, we have never seen a flash flood......the Flambeau River runs through our town and directly beside the paper mill my DH works and of which I'm the only one on the E. side of it, the rest of my family is to it's W. so, I shutter to think if it ever happened here.
God Bless Those Families, Every One
and Bless Your Week Too Betsy and George Stay Safe

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

This is indeed a very sad event.We have been watching the news on CNN and can hardly believe our eyes at the destruction.
I can understand how it would feel even close to you,having been in the area recently.My prayers are with these people.
Blessings,Ruth

Susie said...

It is a tragedy Betsy! I've been keeping these families in my prayers.

Sandra said...

I hve been watching this on TV and internet and it is horrific. I wondered each time i saw it if your sweet little mountain cabin was close to it. this is to horrile for me to take in, so many of the dead are children. heart breaking.
a word to you and George, i saw on TV a woman fell off a waterfall in SC and died. so be extra careful when you are on the edge taking photos.

amelia said...

This is just awful!! I have heard of flash floods but I've been lucky enough never to have witnessed or been involved with one. I'm not sure that they have happened here or even in the vicinity.
Maybe this area will never be used to camp again..

Mildred said...

Hi Betsy, What a tragedy. I will remember the families in prayer and also the rescue workers searching for victims. I know this hits you and George especially hard after having enjoyed your visit there so recently.

carolina nana said...

HI BETSY, I HAVE BEEN FOLLOWING THAT FLOODING TRAGEDY ON TV. AND LIKE YOU AS A LOVER OF CAMPING I JUST CAN'T IMAGINE THE FEAR THOSE POOR PEOPLE WENT THROUGH THAT NIGHT. IT ALWAYS SEEMS WHEN SOMETHING LIKE THIS HAPPENS IT IS ALWAYS IN THE DARKNESS OF NIGHT MAKING IT EVEN MORE SCARY.
THANKS FOR YOUR CONCERN AND PRAYERS FOR MY SON. I HOPE YOUR KNEE SURGERY WORKS AND YOU NEVER HAVE TO GO ANYTHING LIKE THIS,ALTHOUGH THE DR SAID A TOTAL KNEE REPLACEMENT IS EASIER TO GET OVER THAN WHAT HE HAS. BLESSINGS TO YOU. MARILYN

Busy Bee Suz said...

I saw this on TV Betsy...it is so tragic. I feel for those who were effected by the floods. So sad.

Ginny said...

This is just ghastly! I've never heard of anything like this happening. I haven't watched the news in several days, I need to turn it on now. It was not raining when this happened? People were actually in tents on the ground?

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hi Betsy, it was an unbelievable tragedy. Even in areas prone to flooding, it is rare to have water come up that fast and that high. I feel so bad for the families involved.
Marnie

Homemade Quilts by Granny said...

How horrible to have no warning and to lose your family to something like this...I just can't imagine...this is heart breaking. Trish

Small City Scenes said...

A horrible tragedy and leaves us asking the wise one up above--WHY!!
Prayers are going out to all families. I hope they realize some comfort some where, some how. MB

Diane said...

Flash floods can be so deadly and terrifying. I'm sure it disturbs you terribly to think you were there before. Betsy, I saw that on TV and it was awful - and so fast.

My mom and dad's home was in a dry, higher up part of town but one summer a flash flood came tearing down a gulley northwest of town, filled their cellar and generally made a mess of things. But it wasn't like the one in Arkansas, it was way smaller. But it came out of nowhere!! Blessings, Diane

Becca's Dirt said...

This such a horrible tragedy for all of these families. This is something totally unexpected of folks camping in a park. I've never heard of water rising that fast from a rain. Prayers for the families.

Tipper said...

I've been watching the news reports-it is so so sad. Amazing and scary what water can do when it's unleashed in that way.

imac said...

Dreadful news.

Thoughts and Prayers to all.

LV said...

Betsy, thank you for reminding us what a terrible thing this was. Nature has its own mind and we cannot read it. I have never been for staying in a remote area. My heart goes out to all the families.

Jen said...

Indeed a tragedy. It is amazing how a few inches of rain can cause such life changing events.

Bird Girl said...

The whole thing is just heart wrenching and it really hit home for you and George since you were just there and loved it so much. Yes, I will remember those families - how sad and scary!

The Quintessential Magpie said...

This really was horrible! I felt so bad for the people in Arkansas. It's hard to believe that water can rise that fast in a few hours.

This reminds me of the people in Mississippi who had to swim when their HOUSES collapsed during Katrina. They grabbed trees and anything else they could grab and were in the elements for hours. My heart goes out to anyone who has faced this.

XO,

Sheila

SmilingSally said...

Betsy, I'm so glad that you and George were not there during the flash flood. Those things are horrible; we lived in Texas during one, when one of our friends lost their daughter.

Karin said...

What unbelievable devastation and such a sudden tragedy! We, too, saw it on the CNN news! I didn't realize that this was one place you had been to before - didn't make the connection. How heartbreaking for all the families concerned!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

This was such a sad tragedy, Betsy. I can't imagine the horror those campers went through. My thoughts and prayers are with their families.

nanny said...

It really is amazing...the power of the water....
Last report stated all of the missing have been found, except for one! So sad! Just out for a relaxing weekend......

sEy said...

OMG! looks like the same thing that happened to our country last year when we were strike by endless typhoons.

I'll pray for everyone!

Cicero Sings said...

This is tragic in deed Betsy! Wow! Feel so sorry for the families that lost loved ones. Terrible.

Daisy said...

Such a sad situation. How terrified those people must have been. I can't even imagine it.

The Retired One said...

I saw that on the news...and was saddened by it too...it is amazing that you had been there and could personally relate to it.

wildlifewatcher said...

Yes, I am praying for the families of those who died, were injured, lost everything, or just witnessed it all unfold.

Together We Save said...

That is terrible.. unbelievable! I will be saying extra prayers for these families!

Linda (PA_shutterbug) said...

I heard on the news the other day that more lives are lost in floods than tornadoes. Other natural disasters were listed as well, but I can't remember them.

Kirigalpoththa said...

That is terrible. I'm really sad to hear that so many have died of the floods.

SquirrelQueen said...

Like several of the others I thought about your mountain getaway as I read the news reports on this tragedy. While an event like this is always bad it seems even worse when we have visited the area.

I have seen rising flood waters but nothing of this magnitude. My heart aches for the families of the victims.

KleinsteMotte said...

We see so much more tragedy these days. Prayers to all. Sad so sad...

Rose said...

I cannot even describe how I felt when I heard about this flooding...just wondering who left who behind...I bet there were people there that maybe had not even told anyone else where they were going to be. I often then about when Roger and I take off on our drives...most times we don't tell a soul.

Janie said...

Steve camped in that area as a kid. It's shocking to see so much devastation. I'm so sorry for those who lost loved ones in this tragedy.