Flooding in late January was caused by ice jams on the East and West Forks of the Carson River. Some bridges along both forks were swept away. Flooding also occurred later in the spring, as the air temperature warmed quickly. Carson Valley east and north of Genoa was reported to look like a large lake, and between Genoa and Gardnerville, the Carson River was nearly a mile wide in places. Flooding in Empire and Dayton caused the stamp mills and some of the mines in Gold Hill and Virginia City to shut down for several days.
Type of event: rain-on-snow
No recorded precipitation is available. Information is anecdotal. The winter period leading up to the ice jams and flooding in the spring of 1880 was referred as the "While Winter" by Nevadans. The winter began with heavy snows in November and continued until January. No mention in the NRCS publications of snow depths in the valleys or mountains. Temperatures are inferred to have been very cold as ice jams formed along the East Fork Carson River (U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1973).
U.S. Department of Agriculture, 1973, Water and related Land Resources, Central Lahontan Basin, Carson River Subbasin, Nevada and California: Flood Chronology, Lower Half, Carson River Subbasin 1861-1976, U.S. Soil Conservation Service, Minden, NV., p. 13-16.
No Hydrologic Data available.
No Photos Available.
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