Tag Archives: river levels

More rain could push James above 14 feet by Friday

James River at 12 feet at Pipeline Rapids, March 8, 2010The James River reached levels higher than 12 feet Tuesday and plenty more rain is expected Thursday (see photos on the James River News Hub facebook page). Since the James is predicted to stay above 9 feet heading in Thursday, that means more potential for again surpassing the flood stage Friday and in to the weekend, according to the National Weather Service’s Advanced Hyrdologic Prediction Service. Continue reading


Four people rescued from southside rocks at Belle Isle

River rescue on the southside rocks at Belle Isle. Photo by Dwight Nixon, NBC12Report from NBC12

Four people were rescued from the southside rocks at Belle Isle in downtown Richmond Friday afternoon.  One by one, the group of young adults who went about 50 feet from the shoreline onto the rocks to do some homework ended up getting hauled back onto shore. Rescuers were in a fight against time. The sun was setting as the last person was pulled to safety. Two guys and two girls, rescuers say these four made the right call, by not trying to get back to shore on their own.    

There’s no law that prohibits people from getting in the James River, but once the water levels hit 9 feet or higher, the law requires a permit to canoe, swim, or even climb on the rocks. Lifejackets are required above 5 feet. Check James River levels with the Richmond Westham Gauge.

UPDATE: James River forecast to peak above 9 feet

Click for the Westham gauge

James River levels have risen almost two feet in the past 48 hours at the Westham gauge, which is located on the north side of the river near the Huguenot Bridge in western Henrico County. As of 8 a.m. Friday, water levels were up to 5.22 feet and the peak is forecast to be 11.8 feet at 2 a.m. Saturday morning. Flood stage is 12 feet. Forecasts are always being adjusted and the peak may continue to drop.

  • 3.61 at 8 a.m. Wednesday
  • 4.8 at 8 a.m. Thursday
  • 5.22 at 8 a.m. Friday
  • 11.1 at 8 a.m. Saturday (forecast)
  • 8.4 at 8 a.m. Sunday (forecast)

If you go to the river, watch for fast-moving rapids and debris. The river hasn’t had much movement in weeks and plenty of driftwood will be floating downriver today. Life jackets are required at 5 feet and you must have a license to be on the river above 9 feet.

Ever wonder how to check water levels in the James?

How to check water levels in the James RiverWhen you’re planning a paddle on the James, make sure you check the river levels. There are two gauges along the Falls of the James:

The links will remain available on James River News in a box on the left side of the page!

Provided by the National Weather Service, Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service