Schroon River flooding endangers homes, roads

A Schroon River Forest Road home and vehicle are seen in water due to flooding from the Schroon River on Monday in Chester. The National Weather Service is predicting the river will continue to recede from its high point over the weekend. A flood warning remains in effect for Schroon and areas north of Exit 24 of the Northway. (Provided photo — Don Lehman, The Post-Star)

Springtime flooding on the Schroon River is an annual occurrence, and this year was no exception. This time, however, the annual snowmelt from the southern Adirondacks coincided with heavy rain, and that pushed the river to near “major” flood levels in recent days.

The river found its way into numerous homes and onto several roads in northern Warren County, but as of Monday, no evacuations had been requested. Tannery Road in Horicon, on the east side of the river, had some issues with water on the road in spots, and one house on Route 8 had water across its driveway.

Elsewhere, several seasonal homes were flooded on Schroon River Forest Road in Chester and Frog Bottom Lane in Horicon. One resident of Schroon River Forest, whose home avoided floodwaters, said the water had receded by about a foot since Sunday morning.

“It’s high, but I’ve seen it higher,” Horicon Supervisor Matt Simpson said.

Warren County Emergency Services Coordinator Brian LaFlure said he and his staff have been checking on the river periodically in recent days, and as of late Sunday the river seemed to be dropping. The National Weather Service was predicting that it would continue to recede.

“Everything is starting to come down,” LaFlure said.

With no more heavy rain in the forecast for the next few days, and much of the snow having melted in the southern Adirondacks, LaFlure said it seemed the worst had passed for residents of riverside communities in Chester, Horicon, Warrensburg and Bolton.

A flood warning remains in effect for Schroon north of Exit 24 of the Northway until further notice.

Jim Coughlin, who has lived on a hillside along the Schroon in Warrensburg since 1977, said this spring’s flooding brought the river to some of its highest levels in years. He said 2011 was the worst in recent years, but this spring’s levels were up there as well.

“It’s really high,” he said.

In other areas, the Hudson River rose above flood stage in North Creek, Hadley and Fort Edward over the weekend, but no evacuations or major problems were reported. Some low-lying roads in the Fort Miller area were flooded over the weekend, however.

Lake Champlain is also above flood stage in its south end, and will continue to rise into the middle of the week as runoff makes its way into the lake. The lake wasn’t expected to crest until Wednesday, and will approach “moderate” levels of flooding that could result in water in some lakeside homes.

As of late Sunday, some docks in the Whitehall area were underwater, according to the Washington County Department of Public Safety.

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