Black Brook enters the Cold River from the south (left side of top image) just above the Route 2 bridge over the Cold. Looking upstream on the Cold River, you can see bank scour as well as deposition of rather large materials Some of these materials were likely deposited by human action during the restoration of the Route 2 Bridge. Compare this photo taken August 30, 2011, the day after the hurricane, and these taken October 18 and November 16, 2011, during the bridge restoration. The bottom photo shows the confluence on February 26, 2016.
The Combined flows of Cold River and Black Brook, along with the debris they carried, did extensive damage to the Route 2, scouring bridge abutments on either side. This rendered Route 2 impassable. It was several months before the bridge was repaired and this section of route 2 was reopened to traffic.
Read more in the Mohawk Trail Irene Damage virtual tour https://riversmartvt.umass.edu/virtual-tours/317/
To see a panoramic view of this site (taken November 3, 2013) open this link: http://www.gigapan.com/gigapans/144474 .
A short walk up the now discontinued Black Brook Road reveals considerable alterations to the stream and nearby infrastructure.
Black Brook is a high gradient stream. During Irene, it was capable of moving large boulders, rocks, uprooting and transporting trees. There was sufficient force to scour several vertical feet of streambed, transport large boulders and uprooted trees, and widen the bed enough to destroy Black Brook Road, which runs along the brook. New guardrails had been installed along Black Brook road just a few weeks before Irene hit. These also were destroyed during the storm. As of late February 2016, repairs to Black Brook road were underway. The bottom photo, taken on February 26, 2016, shows how the stream bank has been stabilized.
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