Breaking News Noon - Lake Hodges Dam overflow drawing hundreds of people to Del Dios bluffs...
UPDATE 3:30 P.M. -- Falling water has picked up speed and flow while the immediate vicinity of the dam has become a mad dash for the ever-growing stream of sightseers. With limited parking, people are parking in mass quantities all over Del Dios Highway. Several hundred people an hour now are coming and going with the average viewing experience about 20 to 30 minutes.
Long story short, be careful out there.
If anybdy has photos, videos, descriptions they wish to include in this coverage, please post using the post tab above or email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will assemble them into our continuing coverage. Should rain resume later today, as predicted by forecasters, Sunday promises to be an even more amazing show.
Water, water everywhere, and people, too, on the bluffs overlooking Lake Hodges Dam where a Niagara Falls-type waterfall has ensued following Saturday morning's rain.
And more rain is expected Saturday night.
As Ah-Ha Rancho Santa Fe News has predicted since the start of the year, this unusual, and exotic event, has become the leading tourist attraction in North County San Diego.
Dozens of people, soon to grow to hundreds, have descended on normally busy two-lane Del Dios Highway. Rancho Santa Fe firefighters, San Diego Sheriffs deputies and even a lifeguard unit were posted at the scene just before noon.
You lucky visitors to our site, we remain the only San Diego media on the story. The others will be on the scene later, no doubt.
Even greater flooding happened in the early 1980s when the dam didn't hold back the lake. Capital improvements made since then improved the area's ability to overcome lake spills, according to water officials.
Rancho Santa Fe Fire and San Diego Water officials were expected to keep downstream residents and facilities such as Helen Woodward Animal Center and Fairbanks Ranch Country Club informed of developments. Helen Woodward flooded badly last month during the last rain event.
Lake Hodges is owned by the city of San Diego, but sells water to customers in the Santa Fe Irrigation District and San Dieguito Water District. A 300-square mile watershed extending to Julian feeds the lake.
These links go to our stories this week on the lake and dam:
(Photos: A Rancho Santa Fe Fire engine company leads traffic past Lake Hodges Dam on Saturday. Second photo is typical view of the parking area at the dam bluffs. Below, same parking area at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.)