Arizona’s ‘ Valley of the Sun ’ becomes . . . ‘Land of 1000 Lakes’ after the ‘Flood of 2014’

Posted: September 28, 2014 in Arizona, Captain Rick, Photography, Photography by Atridim
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Captain Rick: This grassy park in Chandler Arizona was submerged by several feet of water during the heaviest rainfall since records began in 1895. Nearly 4 inches of rain fell in an 8 hour period on September 8, about half of what is normally received in an entire year, causing the worst flooding in the Phoenix area in 44 years.


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Most parks in the Phoenix area double as a flood basin. Their floor is several feet below that of the lowest neighboring street and are sized large enough in area to collect all of the rain from neighboring streets. Most of the basins are designed to hold rain runoff from a 50 year flood. This record flood exceeded the capacity of many of the basins. Many overflowed onto neighboring streets, converting the parks into lakes. In the days following the flood, the Phoenix area became the ‘Land of a Thousand Lakes’.

The rain that produced the flood, totally submerged my back yard pool for the first time ever. It required several inches of water to be pumped out, followed by a major cleanup.

To add insult to injury, Gilbert was hit by ‘Round 2’ a few day ago…collecting another almost 2″ of rain. September has brought the Valley of the Sun nearly the total average rainfall for an entire year.

I now have permanent drainage depressions landscaped into my side yards to allow rain to flow from the back yard to the street.  I have gained total respect for the wrath that heavy rain can bestow in the desert.

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  1. Sandi Bartlett says:

    We have had some nasty storms this summer. The worst I can remember in years. But we needed the rain.

    • atridim says:

      Hi Sandi,
      It was bad…and we did need the rain. It would have been nice if it didn’t all come at once. Thanks for your comment.
      Captain Rick

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