High and Dry: How JBW Survived the Flood!

Everyone pitching in!
Whew! It's been a whirlwind few days here at Jimmy Beans Wool and we have a lot to share! It all started last Friday with a little bit of rain....

We get by with a
little help from our friends!

Normally flooding isn't a common problem here in the high desert. We do have a lovely little river that runs right through town called the Truckee River. The Truckee is the only river that originates in Lake Tahoe, and it winds it's way down the mountains through Reno and then ends in Pyramid Lake. We are lucky to have such a wonderful, clean water source, and most of the time, it doesn't overflow...

On Thursday, we heard rumor of a lot more rain coming our way and the possibility of flooding. We didn't think we would be in the flood zone, but by Friday, all of that had changed. The nearby farm (across the street from us) had begun evacuating their animals and the county had declared that we were officially in a "State of Emergency"...we started getting worried.

We knew it was time to start prepping for the worst so we sent some of our staff, including Doug, outside to start filling sandbags while the rest of us rushed to get orders out the door. I should mention that on top of all of this Friday was our all-time best and biggest day ever for orders thanks to the Newsletter and Christmas at Downton! As Laura put it, it was our best and worst day ever, all rolled into one! Never a dull moment here at Jimmy Beans Wool!

Sorry, we're closed for flooding. :(
We called in for reinforcements and borrowed shovels, and warm clothing to get through the hard work outside in the pouring rain. Rachel and Bethany's hubbies as well as Sharon and Shevawn's boyfriends all came down to help. (Thanks guys! We couldn't have done it without you!) We also had a little help from Huck and his lamb "Baby"! A bunch of us stayed until midnight to ship the last of the packages. We wanted to get everything we could shipped out before the worst of the storm!

Everything up!
Finally, we had all entrances sandbagged and ready for anything. Now it was time to get the inside ready in case the water still came in. We moved every bit of yarn in the warehouse up to higher ground, four feet or higher! We weren't going to take any chances with our precious inventory! Every last bit of electronic equipment was removed from the building as well. We filled 2 SUV's and a minivan! Wowzer!

Team Meeting!
By mid-morning Saturday, we were as prepared as can be and now it was time to wait. The worst of the storm was supposed to happen around noon on Sunday. The weatherman was predicting that the snow in the mountains would turn to rain in the lower elevations causing everything to melt super fast and clog the river with too much water. Luckily, a cold front moved in instead on Sunday and this never happened! Some parts of Reno and Sparks were still affected but it never got as bad as the predictions. We were safe from flooding altogether! Hurray! Such a relief.
The shop is ready!

Even though we never experienced the flooding, we completely understand the scariness of the situation and our hearts go out to anyone who has experienced this before! Flooding is serious business!

Two thumbs up for NO flooding!
So, after a crazy few days, we are finally getting caught up here at the shop. Orders are back on track, and all of the yarn is back in its place, save for a few scared little skeins we keep finding huddled in random corners. Otherwise, all is well again here at Jimmy Beans (or as Sandy sometimes calls it just for laughs, the Palace of Fine Yarns)! Thanks so much to all of you who shared positive thoughts, kind words of encouragement, and crossed your needles for us last week! We really, truly believe it helped! :)

Happy Tuesday everyone!

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Reno Flood 2012


  1. Way to go! What a blessing all those guys (and gals) who pitched in w/o hesitation. Helping each other in a time of need is what it's all about wheather it be a business or an individual. So glad to hear you were bypassed by the rising waters!

  2. Hi, I saw your post on Ravelry (actually via Facebook) about the KAL. If I want to order yarn for the KAL, how many skeins of the Christmas at Downton would I need to order? Thank you!

  3. Oh, I looked at the newsletter and saw it's one hank. Sorry!

  4. Glad you are all OK. The Truckee is beautiful. Can't wait to get a chance to return to Reno and see the new store.

  5. Has anyone ever considered re-routing the Truckee River?
    I grew up next to a river and it flooded every year UNTIL the army corps of engineers changed the route AWAY from businesses. No more floods!

    Why be at the mercy of nature?