The mayor of Hamilton, Washington wants to up and move the town center to avoid future flooding.
Hamilton, Washington has a history with floods that runs nearly as deep as the town itself. Founded in 1877, it’s first major flood was just 20 years later.
On average, the town experiences a significant flood every 3.5 years. Now some say it’s time to head to higher ground.
With winter looming, Jane Zillig can’t help but think about flood season and how bad it can be in Hamilton. The flood of 1990 was the high water mark for her.
“It was really bad,” she says. “We got in our canoe and paddled around looking to rescue any pets or do anything helpful that we could.”
Settled on the north bank of the Skagit River, Hamilton’s population has stayed pretty much the same for years. 300 people inhabit the mill town. 200 of them live in the flood zone.