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Staying Safe On Eastern Iowa Rivers

JONES COUNTY, IA (CBS 2/FOX 28) -- For those looking for an escape from the never ending heat wave, nothing spells relief like a day on the river.
 
"Great day on the water, wasn't too hot, didn't rain on us," resident Joel Sausser said.
 
"Definitely a hug stress relief from school, I just love being outdoors," resident Brittney Ketelsen said.
 
It allowed a day to relax and take in the scenery, not all of it being pretty however.
 
"Actually, there were a few huge trees that were down on the banks," vacationer Justin Fahringer said.
 
The debris is another lingering effect of spring flooding across eastern Iowa.
 
"As that water comes down everything it leaves behind is one the riverbanks or in the shallows," said Joe Wilkinson with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources
 
He says large debris isn't the only post flood issue.
 
"As you have a flood come through, it's going to scour out new holes and deposit sediment," Wilkinson said.
 
Meaning your favorite river spots may have changed since last year
 
"There may be a sandbar there now, or there may be a deeper hole that may not be that two foot shallow you're used to," Wilkinson said.
 
Much of that change exists at the river bend. Recreational vendors like Mike McDonough  tells his customers to be alert.
 
"Generally if it's going to be deep, it's going to be where a tree went down in the flood along the side of the river and maybe created an undercurrent," McDonough said.
 
His advice - stay away from the banks.
 
"What we'll generally tell canoers and tubers; If you stay in the middle of the river for the most part, you're gonna be pretty well clear of it."

While many rivers are seeing debris, people we spoke to say the Maquoketa river is pretty clear compared to others they've been on in eastern Iowa
   
The DNR suggests that you wear a life jacket if youre going out on a river, no matter your age or experience level.
 
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