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A State Park Is Feeling the Effects of Dennis

By: Monica Buchanan
By: Monica Buchanan

Hurricane Dennis dropped a lot of rain in a short period of time, flooding many rivers and lakes.

Johnny Simon has enjoyed many afternoons fishing at Reed-Bingham State Park. Although not an expert, he's fooling plenty of folks this week.

Johnny says, "It gives you an advantage with the water like this, you got more fish coming into the general area, so you get a little bit of an advantage."

That's because the little river is more than 18 feet deep right now. That's almost 10 feet above flood stage. All that extra water has brought in plenty of fish for these guys.

If you're looking to do much else at the park though, you're out of luck.

Paul Bradshaw, a Reed-Bingham State Park ranger, says, "We're not allowing any boats on the water because it's a danger and a hazard right now. Our safety cable, which marks our dam, is underwater, so the boaters can't tell where the dam starts and the lake ends.

The water is not only closing beaches and preventing watercrafts from entering the lake, it's also rushing under the bridge that connects the north to the south side of the park. That's causing the root systems to weaken, and trees are landing in the road.

With docks split in half and the beaches washed away, park rangers say they believe the worst is over.

Bradshaw says, "Normally with the river it will drop and hopefully we'll be back in commission by this weekend."

Until then, the fishermen plan to make the best of the flooding. Park rangers say the flooding at Reed-Bingham hasn't been that bad since the floods in 1994.


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