Wye at Buxton

Inland paddling
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S.P.
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Wye at Buxton

Post by S.P. » Sat Oct 18, 2014 9:55 pm

There is something wrong with the gauge .Today we went to the Wye as it was showing as high and knowing the river it'll last a few hours but when we got there it was a scrape .We walked to some bank protection works to see if there was some kind of water diversion but there isn't .We never paddled it and on our return the gauge reading has changed but it is still High.There were lots of boaters about .Don't waste a trip tomorrow .I will try to find out why .Stuart

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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by damppaddler » Sat Oct 18, 2014 10:19 pm

The ashford in the water gauge is working

You need around 0.6 to run the wye

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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by andypagett » Sat Oct 18, 2014 10:28 pm

I left a note on Rainchasers about this as we noticed the same thing... it was hovering around 'scrape' the other weekend, then went to 'high' we were going to set out, but damppaddler went down to check the levels for us and it was basically un-runable.

The gauge used to bottom out around 0.2, but it doesn't drop below about 0.56 currently, so something has changed, and currently, the Rainchasers calibrations are therefore definitely wrong. Might be worth someone bobbing their head over to look at the gauge (I think it's near the entrance to Morisson's) to see if anything is currently amiss, or whether it's a permanent change and the calibrations need doing (either on the Buxton gauge, or changing to the Ashford gauge)

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Jim Pullen
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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by Jim Pullen » Sun Oct 19, 2014 9:49 am

I stuck a reply to your comment Andy - would it be best to just add 0.35m onto all rainchasers calibrations until better ones are known? I can change that now to prevent any more wasted journeys?
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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by andypagett » Sun Oct 19, 2014 10:22 am

Ah sorry, didn't see the reply on Rainchasers... Looking at the past month history on riverlevels.info, I would say that would probably be about right. Probably leave a note on the guide to explain that they are new calibrations and should be treated with caution until someone has actually witnessed the river at the new levels. Unless damppaddler has a full set of calibrations for the Ashford gauge, then that might be more accurate

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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by Jim Pullen » Sun Oct 19, 2014 10:29 am

Ok, changed it. Let me know if these give a better approximation. I also noted that the put-in is showing at the wrong quarry, must have been a slip of the mouse when the guide was created. Unfortunately, it's not letting me update that, so I'll have to see if Rob can fix it.
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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by S.P. » Sun Oct 19, 2014 7:13 pm

Thanks for a all this.

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Re: Wye at Buxton

Post by andypagett » Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:58 pm

Thanks Jim.

Based on a comment in another thread about the EA being helpful, I have emailed them to ask if they have done any work which would affect the gauge - I guess it's mutually helpful, because if they haven't, they'll probably want to take a look anyway to see why the levels are reading so high.

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Wye at Buxton

Post by andypagett » Tue Oct 21, 2014 4:04 pm

I've had a reply from a very helpful chap called Rob at the Environment Agengy:
Thanks for passing on the information regarding the water levels in Buxton. I work within the Hydrometry and Telemetry team responsible for the monitoring network and have been passed your query. You are correct in noting that the Buxton level gauge has recorded higher than expected levels since late August 2014. These recorded levels have not been indicative of the true river levels through Buxton and down the catchment area. However, the recorded water levels are correct and not due to faulty telemetry or sensors. The increased level is local to a 20m section of the River Wye near our equipment. Two informal weir structures have been built upstream and downstream from our monitoring site. This has caused elevated levels at our monitoring point due to a ponding effect. The increased water elevation is not seen further upstream or downstream due to the catchment gradient. These structures/dams have not been built by the Environment agency and have been built without consent. The dams are well constructed from large stones found within the river. Due to the size, I think it is unlikely they have been built by children, as is common during the summer months. I have walked the section to try establish who and why they have been constructed but have found no evidence. I am arranging for the structures to be removed allowing the levels to normalise. This is important as the site is used to issue high level alarms during an event.

Attached is a photo of the smaller structure upstream, this raises the level by approx 0.5m behind it. The downstream structure raises the level by 0.75m. As you can see from the picture the channel is enclosed by 5m vertical sides and the builder has gone to some considerable effort.

Thanks for taking the time to pass on your query. Please get back to me if you want any further information.
I can't seem to find a way to attach the image, but some effort has gone into building the makeshift weir!

Anyway, it seems therefore that as the river is walled in, a linear correction of about +0.35m* is about right until the EA remove the structures.

* based on my estimates of the current and previous minimum levels. This makes sense - the increase at the upstream edge of the new 'weir' is 0.75, the increase at the downstream edge of the upstream structure will be around 0 due to the gradient, and the gauge is somewhere in the middle.

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