Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
notamermaid

Rhine water levels 2019 and similar topics

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

We are booked on Crystal Bach starting in Amsterdam on April 22 ending in Basel June 5 looks like we may have a sweet spot for river levels as long as we don't get a deluge.  Thanks for hosting this thread it is just what we needed to get info on the Rhine.

 

Jim And Pam

Edited by radar65

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/23/2019 at 10:14 PM, SodusCruiser said:

Good evening notamermaid!

 

It is like seeing a good friend again!  We followed your posts and actually graphed the 3 river sites daily last summer and early fall, and ended up postponing our Rhine River Getaway.  We have rescheduled for May 1-8 with Viking on one of their new ships and have a couple days in Amsterdam at the end ~ and are getting very excited!  

 

Thank you for your travel details, and for monitoring for us the ever-changing levels of the Rhine River.   We owe you much thanks and praise!  Your posts are such an enjoyable read ….. 🙂

 

Warmly,

Laurie & Jeff

 

 

Thank you very much, SodusCruiser. That is very kind of you to say. Glad to read that last year's problems have not put you off.

 

Today it is actually very windy and cool with some rain. Not a nice day to be on the river. It will get better during the week. The river will not react much with a rise as the rain is just scattered and not heavy. There is a bit of snow forecast in the high hills further to the middle of the country. Very much weather as we expect for April.

 

In stormy weather like this we actually get proper waves on the river (i.e. more than the standard ripples) and when the wind comes from a certain direction it makes the river look as though it is flowing upstream.

 

The magnolia trees in gardens and parks are lovely now but I, like many others, am looking forward to the Japanese cherry trees blossoming soon. In Japan it is a big tradition to celebrate the cherry tree bloom, but in Germany there was a time when many such non-native tree varieties where planted in residential streets in towns. Every year spectators and photographers flock to a couple of streets in Bonn that are particularly lovely.

 

I know of a street closer to my home that is still a bit of a "Geheimtipp", a secret that you pass on as a tip. Well, the problem with these inside tips is that they are passed around very quickly in modern media, so I shall keep this one - secret. ☺️

 

notamermaid

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Dear Not a Mermaid:  

 

I’ve been ‘lurking’ for months, reading your posts on this marvelous forum, and I just feel like I need to let you know how grateful I am and how much I appreciate the time you spend updating everyone.  

 

My husband and I have done about 30 ocean cruises since we retired and moved to Florida  5 years ago.... We are doing our first river cruise soon, Viking Rhine Getaway cruise (Basel to Amsterdam) right after Easter...  

 

Like many other people, my husband and I read and heard (probably exaggerated) tales about recurrent water level problems, so your calm and pleasant comments have given us so much peace.   😄  THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH!

 

Sue & Bill In The Villages, FL 

SunnyTodayFL

Edited by SunnyTodayFL
Typo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/24/2019 at 9:38 PM, radar65 said:

We are booked on Crystal Bach starting in Amsterdam on April 22 ending in Basel June 5 looks like we may have a sweet spot for river levels as long as we don't get a deluge.  Thanks for hosting this thread it is just what we needed to get info on the Rhine.

 

Jim And Pam

Thank you. Happy to provide some info. I think you mean you leave Basel on 5 May? It is indeed a nice time travel, hopefully most of that wet, cool April weather will have gone by the third week in April. This week has warm weather, quite typical temperatures in late March and it is cloudy but with sunny spells. Next week, I am afraid, will bring back late winter conditions with frost even in the valley and a lot of rain in parts. The forecast is not reflected in the predicted water levels yet, it is two days too early for that. Will get more accurate (moderately reliable) info by Monday. With the levels having dropped considerably since the last rainy days, it looks unlikely to cause much trouble. It really depends on where most of the rain will fall.

 

The current levels leave much room for rain: Maxau 468cm, Kaub 209cm, Koblenz 224cm.

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/27/2019 at 1:15 AM, SunnyTodayFL said:

Dear Not a Mermaid:  

 

I’ve been ‘lurking’ for months, reading your posts on this marvelous forum, and I just feel like I need to let you know how grateful I am and how much I appreciate the time you spend updating everyone.  

 

My husband and I have done about 30 ocean cruises since we retired and moved to Florida  5 years ago.... We are doing our first river cruise soon, Viking Rhine Getaway cruise (Basel to Amsterdam) right after Easter...  

 

Like many other people, my husband and I read and heard (probably exaggerated) tales about recurrent water level problems, so your calm and pleasant comments have given us so much peace.   😄  THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH!

 

Sue & Bill In The Villages, FL 

SunnyTodayFL

Hello Sue and Bill,

Thank you very much for your kind words.

 

Last year the river levels attracted much attention, for very "good" reasons. Unfortunately it is not exaggerated when I say that the Rhine was shockingly low. The experts blaming it on man-made causes, i.e. climate change did not help to lift people's spirits. On the Rhine the reports have continued with economy statistics reflecting the financial losses incurred, experts continuing their warnings of future events and so on. But for now we are fine. It is sunny and warm, but next week will mean a greater chance for   oz nai nai   to see some snow, higher than I claimed a few weeks ago!

 

After Easter, when you cruise, Spring should be in full swing and flooding is not that likely. It can happen right into June but a river closure normally does not last long. Detailed statistics are difficult to get hold of, but I can assure that a river closure for the whole of France and Germany is rare and while the Upper Rhine has had some proper flooding in May and June in recent (10+) years the Middle Rhine is less likely to experience that.

 

What has happened in the last few years is that with more cruisers being affected as there are just more cruise ships on the rivers, word has spread and people have become more aware of the risks, meaning uncertainty due to fluctuating water levels.

 

I think you are in good hands with Viking, they have a lot of experience with such scenarios and I find the Rhine Getaway a very good product to get you into river cruising. You might want to come back for more! ☺️

 

Have a great cruise.

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking forward to our first European river cruise. It will be the best of times. It will be the wurst of times.

 

Bill and Sandy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, UB & AS said:

Looking forward to our first European river cruise. It will be the best of times. It will be the wurst of times.

 

Bill and Sandy

Will be visiting Vancouver Isle at end of June. Any places you recommend not to miss?

Thank You

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just discovered this thread, and THANK YOU!  My husband and I will be taking our first river cruise in October, B - A. Since we booked, people have mentioned the water level problems of 2018.  I will follow these boards, remain optimistic, and hope for a wonderful trip! 🤞😊

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello ktwofish,

Happy to help. And there are lots of people here on the board very willing to answer questions about their past cruises. You might want to have a look at the roll calls for further info and perhaps you will find someone who will be on your particular cruise. Admittedly, the chances are small. Our host jazzbeau has put together info threads that are as stickies at the top of the page. Highly recommended reading.

 

As regards the water levels: I hope it was not the case of "We have just booked a Rhine River cruise"! Friend: "Really? Wouldn't go on one, they had great problems with water levels last year." Upon which your excitement goes down the drain...

2018 was the worst in history and the news even reached Australia via newspaper articles. To be honest, it really was bad. But I prefer to be optimistic for this year, thinking it cannot be this bad two years in a row. 2017 was a year without drought, just seasonal very low water. As an example. 

 

Have a great cruise.

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, santoliston said:

Will be visiting Vancouver Isle at end of June. Any places you recommend not to miss?

Thank You

Guess it is a question of how are you travelling and how long can you stay? Victoria is a favourite of tourists: whale watching, Butchart Gardens, Craigdarroch Castle, Tea at the Empress Hotel, wandering around Government Street, Chinatown, carriage ride, Rogers' Chocolates (perhaps the very best). If you are driving then going north on the Island and driving to Pacific Rim National Park on the Pacific with some wandering around Tofino. A must see is the stand of old growth timber on the way to the west coast. We are further north (middle of the island) and view the Inside Passage. We love "Our Island".  During the summer we will be driving to Canada's third ocean (Arctic Ocean at Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T.). This will be an adventure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I have to agree that Roger's Chocolates are one of the finest in North America shops for chocolate you must try their Victoria creams they're out of this world whenever I'm in Vancouver or Victoria I have to stop at Roger's Chocolates which doesn't help my waistline but it sure helps my need for chocolate

Edited by USC Adventurer
All of the places mentioned by the other poster to see on Vancouver Island are great it's a beautiful beautiful place to visit not if you have a car there's even more beautiful places to see by driving

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, USC Adventurer said:

I have to agree that Roger's Chocolates are one of the finest in North America shops for chocolate you must try their Victoria creams they're out of this world whenever I'm in Vancouver or Victoria I have to stop at Roger's Chocolates which doesn't help my waistline but it sure helps my need for chocolate

The original Victoria shop itself is iconic and is a must visit.

 

Last year's Christmas shopping for my wife was very easy. I just called Rogers' and had them send her their prestige assortment. Made Sandra happy day after day!

 

Cheers, Bill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, USC Adventurer said:

I have to agree that Roger's Chocolates are one of the finest in North America shops for chocolate you must try their Victoria creams they're out of this world whenever I'm in Vancouver or Victoria I have to stop at Roger's Chocolates which doesn't help my waistline but it sure helps my need for chocolate

 

Rogers' does ship worldwide so you can enjoy your indulgence in California or anywhere else. We live about three hours north of Victoria but still use their shipping instead of driving. Rogers' chocolates are also available on B.C. Ferries on your way to Vancouver Island. Anything worth doing is probably worth overdoing! It's the premier box that I buy, not prestige (which does not exist).

 

Cheers, Bill

Edited by UB & AS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you, notamermaid! You are correct in your assumption.  People have mentioned the 2018 low water levels as if it were commonplace. I have several months to peruse Cruise Critic boards to gather information, but I’m patient and can roll with change.  Only 196 days to embarkation...not that I’m counting! LOL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As mentioned a few days ago, the weather this week is changing to typical April rainy weather. The warm early Spring days are over from tomorrow. Rain will fill the river and the predictions are out. As the levels have dropped a lot over the last week, the impact of the rain this week will be little. Maxau gauge figures are predicted stay below the mean till Sunday and potentially also into next week. For barge traffic the levels are actually getting a little low, i.e. approaching reduced loading capacity, but the rain that is forecast should alleviate that. Plain sailing all the way for river cruise ships.

 

If you are new to the figures: Kaub is the place to look to for indicating low water, 90cm there is what we do not want to see as from that it is not much further down to a figure at which the first large (135m) ships get the first problems with sailing. Rain always keeps the level well above in Spring. Normally always, after last year I am less and less inclined to give anything close to a guarantee. But up until the first week in July flooding is statistically still more likely than low water.

 

The question about historical levels on the Danube from which one can draw conclusions was raised on another thread. Such figures exist in the shape of extreme events and ten year averages. Or larger intervals, depending on what experts want to investigate. Quite frankly, I do not find them very helpful other than giving an indication of what month is better or worse for flooding or drought. After all, at the beginning of this year the statistics were rewritten, now reflecting last Autumn's drought...

 

Currently we are at: Maxau 428cm, Kaub 163cm, Koblenz 172cm

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How was the winter snowfall?  Are there good reserves to melt and keep water levels up this season?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

There have been reports of most of what was lost in Autumn having been replenished over the Winter. However, experts warn us about there being an increased risk of drought for the future. G.M.T. mentioned drought in Germany being anticipated for later this year again in reports. Had not heard that yet myself. The levels are a little low for March, but that can change quickly with a rainy April to bring us flooding in May. It is still very much uncertain what will happen later in the year, but for now it is looking good for April at least. I read a report a few weeks ago by Bloomberg with the headline "Europe's most important river is running dry". The kind of scaremongering headline that compels you to read the article. The Rhine is not running dry, of course. What the report indicates is my remark above about warnings for the future. The glaciers that feed the Rhine have been reduced in size which will in all likelihood result in the Rhine relying more and more on direct rainfall for water in Summer and Autumn. Bloomberg focusses on economy of course, meaning the impact will be felt by barge traffic. How much it will affect river cruising is unknown. Barge traffic relies more heavily on the river carrying water than river cruise ships. For the large cruise ships around 90cm at Kaub is low, for barge traffic it is officially 150cm. There is again more talk about bringing the navigation channel depth near Kaub up to 210cm from the current 190cm. Experts are looking into this, quite literally. More on that in another post.

 

notamermaid

 

Edited by notamermaid
clarification

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/27/2019 at 10:55 AM, notamermaid said:

Thank you. Happy to provide some info. I think you mean you leave Basel on 5 May? It is indeed a nice time travel, hopefully most of that wet, cool April weather will have gone by the third week in April. This week has warm weather, quite typical temperatures in late March and it is cloudy but with sunny spells. Next week, I am afraid, will bring back late winter conditions with frost even in the valley and a lot of rain in parts. The forecast is not reflected in the predicted water levels yet, it is two days too early for that. Will get more accurate (moderately reliable) info by Monday. With the levels having dropped considerably since the last rainy days, it looks unlikely to cause much trouble. It really depends on where most of the rain will fall.

 

The current levels leave much room for rain: Maxau 468cm, Kaub 209cm, Koblenz 224cm.

 

notamermaid

 

Yep my mistake May 5 but a 35 day river cruise may not be bad 😉

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you notamermaid for keeping us up to date.

We are sailing with Uniworld, Amsterdam to Basel in very early June.  I am hopeful that all will still be well at that time.

Will keep checking

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When grown men play with water

 

I mentioned in post #117 that experts are literally looking into how to deepen the navigation channel at Kaub. Yes, men - and possibly a few women - in Karlsruhe are playing with water and looking into it to see how little plastic balls behave in the current. It sounds like enormous fun, but is all very important and scientific. The Bundesanstalt für Wasserbau, that is the Federal Waterways Engineering and Research Institute, has built a true to scale model in scale 1:60 of a section of the Rhine to see how the current and gravel banks change with different ways of deepening the navigation channel. They want to publish their findings in 2020. Here is the article and video, in German only, I have not found an English translation yet: https://www.swr.de/swraktuell/rheinland-pfalz/mainz/Fahrrinne-soll-vertieft-werden-Tests-an-Rhein-Modell-soll-Schifffahrt-helfen,optimierung-des-mittelrheins-fuer-die-schifffahrt-100.html

 

Back to the river live. The rain is forecast to raise the level at Maxau to around the mean. All looking good for plain sailing for a while. Current levels: Maxau 453cm, Kaub 151cm, Koblenz 165cm.

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Radar65 -- We're on the Crystal Bach Amsterdam to Basel next year (our very first river cruise) so would love to hear your impressions when you return, we have a long time to wait so would enjoy experiencing your cruise vicariously! Have a wonderful time!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a few weeks and we embark in Amsterdam for boat ride on the Rhine to Luxembourg, our first European river cruise. I have been packed for over a month! Not really excited, but ready. Going to do the trip with just two carry-on bags. We have learned what we really need to pack after a lot of ocean cruises.

 

Cheers, Bill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is the weather and the water conditions in early October. We sail on October 5th from Amsterdam to Basel.  First river cruise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, patprov said:

What is the weather and the water conditions in early October. We sail on October 5th from Amsterdam to Basel.  First river cruise.

 

As easy to predict as the weather conditions in Commack in early October at this point – in other words, nobody knows.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Host Jazzbeau said:

 

As easy to predict as the weather conditions in Commack in early October at this point – in other words, nobody knows.

"Nobody knows" is indeed the general consensus. Grin...

 

Patprov, I do not want to leave it at that though, so here is a general idea. The natural seasonal water cycle of the Rhine means the river is prone to low water levels in October. At this point in reading this post do not go "eeek" and do ignore last year. Low is a statistical value and means low figures,  not too low to sail. 2017 was a year with very few disruptions indeed.

 

The weather is also very varied, night frost can come in the high hills but frost in the valley and snow are a rarity. Expect slightly chilly mornings, rain of varying quantity, but also possibly enjoying a drink in a beer garden in t-shirt in bright sunshine in the afternoon. Or a cocktail on the sundeck 😎.

 

notamermaid

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Q&A with the Coral Expeditions Team
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...