March 2021 Flood Damage Update from Radnor Lake
Over the past weekend, Radnor Lake was not immune to the widespread flooding that occurred in Middle Tennessee. We began clean-up efforts at sunrise on March 28th along with safety assessments of each bridge, each trail, each facility, and residences. The park staff is working diligently to get our trails and Otter Creek Road back to pre-flood expectations even while some of our ranger staff experienced flooding at their own homes, none of them missed even 1 hour of work and/or worked additional hours so that we could safely keep the gates open, have all trees removed-trails open-Otter Creek Road passable for vehicle access and start the process of restoring these areas from the damage of high water on March 28th. Radnor Lake is open normal hours for hiking, 6am-20 minutes after sunset every day of the week.
• Damage to the natural area trails, park facilities and Otter Creek Road were extensive we are still assessing damage at this time.
• Radnor Lake Dam was inspected on Monday, March 29 @ 8am by our state dam inspector and deemed to working as designed.
• Radnor Lake had flooding in 4 facilities including 1 ranger residence, Walter Criley Visitor Center, Education Center at the Barbara J. Mapp Aviary Center and our maintenance shop.
• Otter Creek Road has extensive damage including newly paved parking on the west side parking up the hill to the dam.
• All Trails are open-safe at this time; however they are very muddy and in need of extensive work. Visitors to Radnor should expect for our trails to be muddy for the upcoming week; we have had over 10 inches of rain over a 3 day period. Visitors are asked to not hike around wet areas as that damages sensitive plant life and/or damages the natural area even more. Any visitor not wanting to get their shoes dirty should hike on paved and/or gravel areas only.
• Restrooms at the Walter Criley Visitor Center are closed due to repairs-replacement of septic pumps. Port a johns are being provided in the west parking area until repairs are completed.
• Our 3 new bridges under construction on the east end of the Lake Trail funded by Friends of Radnor Lake withstood their first major test as we near completion of those bridges. Each withstood the flooding as designed by our friend Chris Magill and in the process of being built by Baron Construction.
• Beginning on Monday, April 5th visitors should expect heavy machinery and deliveries of rock to help us restore badly damaged sections of Otter Creek Road and the Hall Drive.
How can you help?
• The best way anyone can help is to follow the posted rules/regulations for hiking at Radnor Lake. This includes staying on trail at all times, not entering any area being worked on/closed and yielding to park equipment being used for major repairs. Thank you in advance for your assistance!
• Volunteer! Much like the 2010 Flood, we will be requesting assistance and/or need to rely upon our volunteers to help us restore much of the damage. Stay tuned for volunteer opportunities in coming month to be posted on how you can help us get our trails back to normal condition. We will need a lot of volunteer help to re-mulch the lake trail, spillway trail and south lake trails in coming months via wheelbarrow.
• Consider giving to Friends of Radnor Lake as they support all of our volunteer efforts at the natural area.
Thank you for your patience over the upcoming months as we work to get our trails back to national trail standards and our expectations at Radnor Lake.