I've personally witnessed the destruction and power of the San Luis Rey River during a flash flooding which can occur after ANY heavy rain storm. The rain does not just move mountains of river sledge, but also sweeps even roads and bridges away. After 2 years of construction, we've just managed to return to normal for our endangered wildlife, with a completed beautiful bridge, but this bridge was constructed BECAUSE the river floods from bank to bank.
The last time the river swept away the coastal road and its earthen bank bridge, a city engineer was standing on it and barely made it off alive. In the dark, the water grabbed the 4' high 20' long culverts and toss them straight up into the air. I talked to the Officer in Charge of the Civil Engineers the next day and he stated that the hundred year flood will fill the entire basin with water 4' to 5' deep from the concrete wall on the south to the concrete wall on the north.
It is irresponsible for dog lovers to consider placing themselves and their kids in danger in such a zone. A flash flood gives no warning when it sweeps into view. In Nevada, I experienced the power of just such a storm and it had not rained in that area for over a year. But, 50 miles away the mountains were full of rain, and so it happens here, when the mountains and farms are under a heavy rain storm, that travels with astonishing speed into the basin and empties cesspools, sewers and farm chemicals into the ocean.
Currently we do not have a warning system which can monitor such an occurring event. In the early morning, sunny afternoon, or stunning sunset, the water can take a life.
This is truly an area which should remain pristine. I recommend that our wildlife be allowed to live undisturbed and that this area of river basin, as far back as Interstate 5 be a non-use area for all. Don't get me wrong, I love dogs! I've had one all my life until I moved here. There are just some places that dogs and even people don't belong and certainly this is one of them.
In this picture you can see the attempt to stem the tide of destruction by bringing in additional sand and piling it up.
But, the fact is the water swept the entire beach area directly in front of the piles into the ocean.
The receding waters still present a life threatening danger as this surfer finds out.
Swept to Sea.