Rockport TX after Hurricane Harvey

Wrecked 5-story boat storage facility

Wrecked 5-story boat storage facility

Hurricane Harvey roared ashore at Rockport TX the evening of Aug 25, then raked the area for over a week with torrential rains and strong winds. Recovery is underway but even now, more than 2 months later, parts of Rockport look like the hurricane roared through last night. The most stunning example of total devastation is the 5-story boat storage facility, which I am sure was fully loaded with boats that owners took out of the water before the storm to keep them safe. Well, they weren’t safe there. There are now hundreds of boats that are total losses, along with the building itself.

A typical side street

A typical side street

A roof, I think, peeled off

A roof, I think, peeled off

But the most poignant scenes can be found on nearly every side street in town. The cleanup efforts have not reached there yet, so the streets are lined with debris of all kinds, including fallen trees, wood from roofs and sheds ripped apart and mattresses, furniture and even toys that were destroyed by the rains. Nobody escaped unscathed and some look like they have lost everything. Everywhere you look you see homes that can’t possibly be occupied. But they are.

RVs that were left on site were also destroyed. Dozens like the one shown line streets throughout the area. I asked the owner of the RV park where we stayed whether any RVs were lost in the storm. Yes, she said – 9 completely destroyed.

Many businesses were lost, too. There was exactly one restaurant the we could find in downtown Rockport that was open for business. Many convenience stores and gas stations remain shuttered.

It is going to be a LONG time before Rockport returns to normal. I can’t even imagine how much it is all going to cost.

One of many destroyed RVs

One of many destroyed RVs

Random debris along TX 35

Random debris along TX 35


One of the most puzzling things I saw was the debris just inland from the shore south of Corpus Christie. The city did not get hit very hard – sustained winds there were barely minimum hurricane force, compared to the 140 mph winds that smashed Rockport. But the shore had lots of debris, including things like a chest freezer and other heavy appliances, more than a mile from the nearest home. How did they get there? I can only guess that they floated south from Rockport and washed in with the tide.

One very thin silver lining: there is going to be a LOT of cheap firewood this winter.

Shore debris

Shore debris

Destroyed playground at our camp

Destroyed playground at our camp

Firewood

Firewood

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