A kayak trip down the Rivanna turned into a wet river bank scramble Thursday afternoon for four paddlers.
The couples' kayaks flipped in the rapidly rushing river, which had dropped just below flood stage, tossing all four into the water near a Milton Road farm.
"They had put into the Rivanna at Darden Towe Park and at some point ran into some problems and the kayaks turned over," said Battalion Chief Matt Ascoli, of Albemarle County Fire and Rescue. "One couple was able to get to shore right away and the other couple made it to shore somewhere down stream.
Water rescue teams from five agencies rushed to the area in case the boaters needed to be rescued, staging at the Luck Stone river access. The river, which had peaked at 21.5 feet in depth - more than four feet above its 17-foot flood stage - had dropped to about 15.5 feet where the kayakers entered the water, according to the National Weather Service.
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"They pretty much made it out on their own," Ascoli said. "We just assisted them in getting back to their vehicles."
The Rivanna River had been swollen by the 2 to 3 inches of rain that fell in the Charlottesville area Wednesday, dropped by a storm front that collided with an atmospheric train of Gulf Coast moisture.
The storm, which included isolated thunderstorms with torrential downpours, created scattered power outages across the region on Wednesday. Service had been restored by Thursday.
High water from rain-swollen streams closed more than a dozen roads in Charlottesville and Albemarle County on Wednesday, but the Virginia Department of Transportation reported all but Route 698 (Burchs Creek Road) in Albemarle County had reopened by Thursday.
Eight roads were reported closed at stream crossings in Louisa County, three roads in Orange County and two roads in Madison County, all in rural areas.