Paddling through pumpkin patches in Snoqualmie
If you were planning on going to pumpkin patch this weekend, you might have fewer options. Record floods in the Snoqualmie area have put some farms underwater.
Jeremy Houston is with First Light Farm in Carnation. He says he’s experienced more than a dozen floods in his lifetime, but Tuesday’s flooding was different. When the river had breached water was dumping into the field—fast.
“It went from ankle deep to the top of my boots really, really quickly, in about 10 minutes,” he said.
Houston says he and his friend worked as quickly as they could to save farm tools and equipment. Soon they had to leave. They managed to grab a canoe.
“It was really surreal because the pumpkins from the pumpkin patch were coming down the river with me. So I’m floating down this road with pumpkins around me and I’m using the oar to break and keep from going into the slough channels.”
The floods have since receded, but things aren’t back to normal yet. “As of yesterday, the farm was still inaccessible except by canoe,” said Jane Reis, who owns the farm with her husband Don.
“Today’s the first day since the flood that the farmers and myself have been able to walk the land.”
Reis says besides losing their pumpkins, all their winter crops are now contaminated by the flood and can’t be sold.
“Just like anything else it’s a financial loss to the farm that can’t be recouped, but we’ve had a good season and we’re nothing but grateful for the good season that we’ve had.”
And more importantly Reis says, everyone’s safe.
Other growers are still planning to open their farms to the public.
"These floods are a big bummer to us farmers and our pumpkin patches, for sure," wrote Kerrie Roetcisoender of Muddy Boots Pumpkins in Duvall.
"Some of us are still operating and working hard to clear the parking lots so we can safely get customers in and out. Hopefully we will be able to have a great last weekend!"