Kelso Flood Monument

Kelso 1865 – 1980. This monument erected on the former site of Wrightson N.M.A. Commemorates the township of Kelso. Finally destroyed by the 1980 flood. [Pomahaka River].

West Otago, New Zealand. Photos taken by Nigel 26 July 2020.


Click on any photo to enlarge

The highest point of the bars denote the flood levels.


Text by Liz, photos by Nigel; Exploring Colour (2020)

12 thoughts on “Kelso Flood Monument

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  1. That last photo provides a good deal of scope that helps to give us an idea of the extent of the tremendous flooding. Unleashed water is undoubtedly one of the major forces in this world of ours.

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  2. I like this monument, incorporating flood levels into the design, it’s a clever and handsome design.
    The climate change maps, showing projections of coastal flooding in the future, are really alarming, it looks like a whole lot of communities are going to be erased or abandoned like Kelso.

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      1. PS. I was also going to say that NZ has rivers everywhere, and especially so down south where I live, plus fairly high rainfall down here too, so our problem here in NZ isn’t just with the coast but also the inland waterways. Kelso is well inland. We regularly have problems with floods and slips blocking highways and bridges washing out. Thank you for your lovely comment about the monument, I agree with you! We really liked it!

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  3. I’ve been hunting for N.M.A. in New Zealand but still am not sure what it means. “National Mortgage and Agency” is one possibility that turned up. In the process of searching I found that New Zealand switched to decimal currency in 1967.

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  4. Floods have been very much on my mind the last few days as the most recent tropical storm moved past us. We were on the fringe of it, getting about 3 inches (76 mm) of rain, but there were other areas with more than triple that amount of rain, extensive flooding, and downed power lines. I am going to read some of your other posts, Liz, to get some of the back story to Kelso.

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    1. I’m glad you escaped the worst of it Mike! Flooding is awful and if the power goes out as well it’s disastrous. Flooding or snow events *plus* loss of power happen all too often here. We get a fair bit of extreme weather in NZ, usually with lots of wind and it’s not unusual to lose the power. Seems to me we lost power a lot more when I was a kid though than now.

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      1. In my suburban neighborhood, our powerlines are underground, so falling trees are less of an issue, but occasionally a transformer gets hit by lightning. We do lose power from time to time, but fortunately we have not had a lengthy power outage for quite some time.

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