- Associated Press - Thursday, May 26, 2016

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) - Authorities have been closely monitoring high water levels along the Current and Jacks Fork rivers in southwest Missouri to determine if sections of the rivers have to be closed to canoes and kayaks for the Memorial Day weekend.

Ozark National Scenic Riverways spokeswoman Dena Matteson said it’s difficult to predict several days in advance whether rivers will reach flood stage, but both rivers can rise rapidly, The Springfield News Leader (https://j.mp/1XzG3hF ) reported. The rivers are popular with paddlers.

The river sections will be closed if they rise above the flood levels, Matteson said Wednesday in an email. A section of the Current River was closed Wednesday because of the rain from Tuesday.

Matteson said paddlers should check with the ONSR social media to see if sections have been closed.

“If we continue to get rain, it’s entirely possible the lower Current River (and possibly additional sections) could be closed as we head into Memorial Day weekend,” Matteson said.

The Buffalo National River in north-central Arkansas also received significant rainfall in recent days, pushing the river up fast in several popular paddling areas.

Another concern from the heavy rainfall includes debris washing into the major Army Corps lakes, which typically draw a lot of boaters over the Memorial Day weekend. Authorities advise boaters to watch for floating or partially submerged logs and debris.


Information from: Springfield News-Leader, https://www.news-leader.com



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