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Weekend rain, winds wreak havoc to trees, fences
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Soggy ground and high winds helped to topple this tree in front of 2928 Rosewood Avenue. - photo by Courtesy of David & Jennifer Odom

Trees and fences were casualties in Ceres and area as high winds swept into the Valley over the weekend.

The city of Ceres reported 17 downed trees throughout Ceres because of the winds, including on Evans Road on Friday and on Rosewood Avenue on Monday. Two of the trees fell on cars and one partially on a house.

"In the grand scheme of things, we've actually fared pretty well," said Ceres City Manager Toby Wells. "Those heavy winds on Friday were probably more problematic than anything else but saturated soils combined with heavy winds leads to a problem."

Localized flooding occurred on some Ceres streets on Monday but Wells said the drainage basins are "handling the water pretty well." He said the city typically experiences few problems unless there are storms with intense rains.

"When it's an inch of rain spread out over time it gives the ground enough time to soak in."

Rising water levels on the Tuolumne River have resulted in flooding and the closure of the lower terrace of Ceres River Bluff Regional Park on Hatch Road. On the north side of the river, parts of Legion Park are inundated.

River Oaks Golf Course reported that its bottom nine holes are underwater.

Wells said he doesn't expect the area of Mitchell Road north of the bridge to flood like it did back in 1997.

"Based on what TID is indicating currently in 1997 the peak flows were at 60,000 cubic feet per second and we're at 18,000 today so that's a huge magnitude of difference. The key really is we're going to be in this for a long time from the Tuolumne River standpoint because of the snowpack. It's just a matter of how much rain we get between now and the end of spring and how warm it is or how cold it is."

Shortly after Wells spoke to the Courier the flows released from the Don Pedro spillway was backed off to 16,000 CFS because anticipated storms did not produce as much rain as expected.