Monday, 28 January 2013

Busway cycle track flooded - 28 January 2013

Snow melt has raised the level of the River Great Ouse, and this morning (28 January) the cycle track is under water on both sides of the Ouse Viaduct. So it's not possible to cycle between St Ives Park & Ride and Fen Drayton Lakes. The cycle track is still dry between Fen Drayton and Swavesey (on 28 January).

Update - 29 January - Here are some photos showing the water pouring into the Far Fen Lake (that's the first pond on the right after Fen Drayton Lakes bus stop as you head towards Cambridge). The water comes in from the Ferry Lagoon ( the big pond on the left just east of Fen Drayton bus stop) which in turn must be fed from the river. There are a couple of small bridges under the busway which allow this flow to happen. Presumably, their small flow capacity  explains why the Fen Drayton to Swavesey section stays flooded once the river level drops.


Water pouring into Far Fen Lake.


One of the small bridges letting water from Ferry Lagoon into Far Fen Lake, with the flooded cycle track in the middle distance.


The second entry point for water flowing from Ferry Lagoon to Far Fen Lake.


For a map showing names of the ponds at Fen Drayton Lakes click here.

13 comments:

  1. I thought it might be after seeing the river on Sunday. Was away the weekend so not until I got back did I relasie there had been a bit of rain !
    Luckily I am off this week !
    Thanks for the update .

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  2. You're welcome, Kevin. I was going to cycle into Cambridge this morning as the weather was good, but when I checked the river at the end of the our street, I guessed the track would be flooded. So I went on the bus. In the three hours I was away, the water level had risen up the side of the brick structure near the concrete bridge. There was quite a strong current flowing from the river towards Fen Drayton Lakes, so I'm guessing that there flooded section will gradually extend and get deeper.

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  3. This morning I went to Fen Drayton Lakes on the bike - via Fenstanton. The Low Road is under about 3 inches of water at the entrance to Crystal Lakes but still passable with care.

    Since yesterday, a couple of new sections of the busway cycle track have flooded.

    One is between the concrete Bridge and the Fen Drayton bus stop, although the tidemark of debris suggest that the water might have gone down a bit at that location, as it has at St Ives.

    However, between Fen Drayton and Swavesey, the first dip is under water and the level is rising - water is pouring into the Far Fen Lake from the Ferry Lagoon at two places.

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  4. Is it me, or does flooding seem to be much more this last year?

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  5. The flooding has definitely been more this year. Here are the stats.

    Since the busway opened on 7 August 2011, the cycle track has been flooded ; 1-20 May 2012 ( 20 days), 15-19 July 2012 ( 4 days), 23 November - 16 December 2012 (23 days), 21 December 2012 - 15 January 2013 (24 days). That's a total of 71 days in a 9 months. There were no floods during the winter of 2011-12.

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  6. So "71 days in 9 months" - that's about 1 day in 4, so not reliable for a commute!

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    Replies
    1. In addition, the Low Road usually floods at the same time, meaning I either have to chance it on the A14 or go the wrong way down the one way system into Fenstanton. Neither of which are particularly appealing.

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  7. I've been trying to find an alternate way of getting to Huntingdon from Waterbeach. Using the road from Fen Stanton is fine on the way to work, but i didnt realise it was one way till i tried to get home last night. Ended up having to walk and pushing the bike the wrong way down here, which was far from ideal and not popular with the drivers! but better than riding on the a14 which is not an option i'm willing to consider. With low road flooded, and also Earith impassable i'm not sure that there is actually a safe (possible) route. Does anyone have any alternatives? Maybe even 'local knowledge' of something south of the a14 somewhere that i can't see on a map. I dont really want to ride much further than i already do on the commute

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    Replies
    1. I think the only realistic alternative to walking against the traffic on the one way road is to go via Hilton. This would add about 5km to your journey.

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  8. 2 Feb - The water level has dropped especially between St Ives and Fen Drayton. Most people are using the top of the embankment to walk along or push their bikes, but I did see one person cycling through the water just east of the Ouse Viaduct. It was probably about 6 inches deep there. The water is slowly draining through the culverts. It may be several more days before the cycle track is dry. As before, there will be a huge amount of debris left behind.

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  9. Update 3 Feb - the cycle track has dried out between St Ives and Fen Drayton, except for a very short section beside the concrete bridge. However, the water is very shallow there, and it should be passable with care on a bike. Still under water at two places between Fen Drayton and Swavesey.

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