The River Lodge withstands the Great Flood of 2011
Construction of The River Lodge on the Susquehanna began in March, 2011. Since that time it has faced the effects of three hurricanes, a tornado and three historic floods. 2011 is expected to be the wettest year ever in Pennsylvania.
The River Lodge sits about 60 feet from the bank of the Susquehanna River which is typically 3 to 4 feet deep in the summer. The flood stage at the nearest measurement point in Harrisburg, is 17 feet. Higher flood stages are then classified as moderate at 20 ft, and major at 23 ft. Of the top 25 recorded floods, 2011 now includes three of them:
4/29/11: 18.39 feet
3/12/11: 20.09 feet
9/9/11: 25.17 feet
The flood that crested around 2:00 AM on September 9, 2011, proved to be the fifth largest in history at 25.17 feet. Some local streams broke all time records, but for the Susquehanna River the Grandaddy of all recorded floods came in June, 1972, when Hurricane Agnes tracked over Pennsylvania following a wet spring, slowly moved northward and then stalled, with a vengeance. The Susquehanna crested at a 500 year flood level of 32.57 feet! The 2011 flood resulted from multiple hurricanes…Irene dropped several inches of rain the week before Lee stalled over the Ohio valley and Katia moved up the Atlantic coast. An unusual trough in the jet stream and the competing hurricanes created a stationary front that pumped moist air from Virginia through the Susquehanna Valley resulting in nearly 15 inches of rain in many locations. Finally, Katia moved further north and west to shut off the supply of moisture and end most of the rain. At the height of the hysteria, the Susquehanna River was predicted to crest at 29 feet which could have brought muddy water to the first floor of the River Lodge. At 25.17 feet, even the garage floor remained dry. While the River Lodge rests on a bank of the Susquehanna it is built with modern floodplain technology and recent EPA regulations. This means it will take another Agnes to harm it.