Monitoring the Chippewa River

The Chippewa River winds through the course, providing some dramatic and enjoyable views. We monitor the height and ice coverage throughout the winter to prepare for what may lie ahead in the spring. With a fall and early winter that saw high amounts of precipitation, the river was much higher than usual going into January. The week of January 12th, the river was at or near bank-full along #17. 



Bucks Run Golf Club Mount Pleasant MI Chippewa River 17

After inspection this week, the water has dropped a couple of feet.

Bucks Run Golf Club Mount Pleasant MI Chippewa River 17 Lower

Why is this something we pay attention to? Two words: Ice Jam. As the ice breaks free after a thaw, it can sometimes “pile up” in bends of the river creating a damming effect. The river will rise very quickly until the jam gives way, and many times this leaves a mess on the course. The below images from 2013 show exactly the kind of mess I am talking about...

Bucks Run Golf Club Mount Pleasant MI Chippewa River Ice Dam

Bucks Run Golf Club Mount Pleasant MI Chippewa River Ice Dam 2013

There is nothing we can do to prevent this occurrence, but we can be prepared for the work ahead of us in the spring. Luckily, the potential for an ice jam this winter is fairly low as the water level drops. But there is always some concern when the river is frozen over. Until next week, have a great day. 

Posted by admin at Jan 27, 2015 Category: January 2015
Tags: Bucks Run Golf Club, Chippewa River, Ice, Ice Jam, Winter, Spring, Golf