Carson River Drops Below Flood Stage

 Staff Reports · 5 min read

MINDEN, Nev. — The Carson River dropped below flood stage after midnight early Sunday morning.

All lanes of Highway 395 re-opened Saturday afternoon.

Carson River near Genoa. Photo by John T. Humphrey

Centerville Road, Genoa Lane, Mottsville Lane and Muller Lane all re-opened earlier in the day.

Footage from John T. Humphrey:

The Carson River main stem reached major flood stage Friday evening, peaking at 12 feet overnight. It has since tapered off slightly but consistently over the past several hours to 11 feet, 6 inches of 11:15 a.m.

Power was restored to all NV Energy customers in Carson Valley Saturday afternoon.

Drone footage on YouTube from Kippy Spilker:


The Highway 395 corridor south of Indian Hills. Photo by Chris Johnson.

Officials are asking residents to stay prepared and take steps to mitigate any resulting issues from recent floods. The National Weather Service is monitoring another pattern of active weather potential producing more flooding later this week.

On Friday, traffic was directed around 395 from Jacks Valley to Foothill for most of the day Friday, with Fairview serving as the only access to Highway 88 before Muller Lane reopened around 2:30 p.m. Centerville reopened later in the evening. Several CVT readers reported the drive between Minden and Carson taking two hours or more Friday evening.

An armored SWAT vehicle was used to rescue 10 people that had been stranded on private property near the flooding at the Highway 395 closure Friday.


Photo by Mandy Weaver. Traffic stacked up along Jacks Valley Road Friday night.

NDOT mobilized heavy equipment to multiple state road bridges in the Carson Valley to remove any potential debris from flooding river waters. Heavy equipment crews were at their respective stations throughout the remainder of the day.

Kingsbury Grade was closed temporarily on Friday as crews plowed and cleaned up the highway following numerous slide-offs and crashes earlier in the morning. It reopened around 12:30 p.m.


Douglas County Emergency Management responded to numerous calls related to power outages, wind damage, flooding, trees falling into structures/power lines, rock/mud slides and fires during the course of the storm and its aftermath.

The Douglas vs. Carson basketball games Friday night were postponed and only the two varsity games will be made up. Girls will play at 3 p.m. Saturday, Boys at 5 p.m. Saturday at Douglas High.

The Douglas County Board of Commissioners declared a State of Emergency Friday afternoon in response to the continued flooding, and the high wind event on Thursday.

All Valley Douglas County School District schools were closed Friday. Middle and high school students had already reported to school when an early dismissal was issued.

On Thursday night, crews monitored various spots around the Valley for flooding activity, including Aspen Mobile Home Park and Kingslane in Gardnerville, where water began to flood low-lying areas of the neighborhoods.

Crews went door-to-door in the affected areas, notifying residents of the flooding and offering shelter for voluntary evacuations.

The emergency shelter at the Douglas County Community and Senior Center was activated for the night to accommodate the voluntary evacuations.

The East Fork of the Carson River in Gardnerville rose to a storm-high 16 feet at 1:30 a.m., Thursday — a startling jump of 11 inches over the previous hour — but the swell quickly subsided, dropping back another 10 inches the following hour and consistently declining in the hours since.

Strong winds wreaked havoc over Carson Valley Thursday morning and afternoon, knocking down fences, trees, power poles and power lines around the Valley.

The peak wind reported to the National Weather Service prior to 1 p.m. was an 85 mph gust in Gardnerville. Minden Airport logged a peak gust of 58 mph.

The Record-Courier reported a 100-mph gust was reported in the Gardnerville Ranchos at 3:23 p.m. using a handheld Kestrel wind meters. The newspaper compiled a list of facts from the storm here.
At one point, more than 9,000 NV Energy customers were reported without power in Douglas County on Thursday.

Wind blows the Carson River Thursday. Photo by Taunee Jensen.

A vehicle crash earlier Thursday evening at Kingsbury Grade and Foothill Road was cleared. Crews also cleared an overturned semi truck in front of the Wa She Shu Travel Center south of Gardnerville.

The roof at the Ranchos Car Wash blew off and onto a series of lines. Photo by Pheonix Gruneich

Douglas County is encouraging residents to utilize the Douglas County Flood Hotline to assist them in obtaining non-emergency information related to current flooding in Douglas County. The hotline is in operation and staffed by DC Sheriff’s Office Citizen Patrol. The hotline is open until 3 a.m. Friday.

The number to call is (775) 783-6404 or (775) 782-9099.

Response priorities for County Road Crews include life safety, preventing damage to homes, maintaining emergency access to property, and providing for safe travel on County roads.

The County reports its Emergency Operations Center is staffed with over 24 mission critical positions, mostly supported by Douglas County staff, East Fork Fire Protection District, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office as well as volunteers, Carson Valley Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Authority, Carson Valley Conservation District personnel, the Douglas County CERT Team.

Mottsville Lane Thursday morning. Photo by John T Humphrey

The East Fork of the Carson River near Gardnerville surpassed the flood stage Wednesday evening following a day full of rain showers in and around the Valley.

The river registered at a depth of 14 feet, 1 inch at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Water from the East Fork entered into low-lying areas of Aspen Mobile Home Park about an hour later.

Willowbend Road off Genoa Lane. Photo by JT Humphrey

East Fork Fire Protection District and Douglas County Sheriff’s Office personnel were on scene monitoring and as a precautionary measure advised residents immediately near the water that the river had come up, but that an appreciable rise was not expected and evacuation was not necessary, according to East Fork Fire Protection Deputy Chief Dave Fogerson.


Further upstream, the East Fork of the Carson River in Markleeville peaked earlier Wednesday evening about three inches short of the eight-foot flood stage, and about 18 inches short of the 9-foot, 3-inch peak reached there during the flood in January).


Cradlebaugh Bridge between Carson City and Minden, 1:15 p.m. Wednesday


Brockliss Slough off Genoa Lane. Photo by JT Humphrey

For Flood Safety and preparation:


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