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Kings River Reopens Just in Time for More Extra-Hot Weather

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Sheriff John Zanoni announced the Kings River has reopened to recreational use after being closed since March. (Fresno County Sheriff's Office)
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Residents of the Fresno region now have a new option for staying cool when triple-digit temperatures return starting Sunday.

The Kings River from Pine Flat Dam to the Tulare and Kings County lines has been reopened to recreational use, Fresno County Sheriff John Zanoni announced this week.

However, Fresno County parks along the Kings and San Joaquin rivers remain closed because of hazards and the need for maintenance work. The closed parks include Avocado Lake, Choinumni, Winton, Laton Kingston, Lost Lake, and Skaggs Bridge parks. The date for reopening has not been determined.

Sheriffs in Tulare and Kings counties also have reopened portions of the Kings River that runs through their counties.

Still Dangerous

Zanoni closed the Kings and San Joaquin rivers on March 14 because rapid snowmelt was contributing to dangerously fast-running and deeper water levels that were life-threatening.

This week the sheriff urged the public to exercise caution in the newly reopened Kings and also the San Joaquin because water levels are still higher and faster than normal and are creating some hazards, including numerous downed trees that create “strainers” where swimmers or boaters may be pinned or even swept underwater by the force of rushing water.

The cold water, now registering 60 degrees, also can lead to hypothermia through extended exposure.

Hot Temps Returning

But with daytime high temperatures forecast to soar past 100 starting Sunday and lasting for a few days, that cold water could be one way to beat the heat.

David Spector, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Hanford, said the forecast now calls for triple-digit temperatures Sunday and Monday, with a short break starting Tuesday that will be followed by more hotter-than-normal temperatures later next week.

The forecast high for Fresno on Saturday is 98 degrees, followed by 102 on Sunday and 104 on Monday.

Spector said the temperature oscillation is caused when high-pressure ridges build up and then flatten, sending hotter weather eastward.

Precipitation will be normal, which means no rain in the Valley but some thunderstorms at the Sierra crest, he said.

Nancy Price is a multimedia journalist for GV Wire. A longtime reporter and editor who has worked for newspapers in California, Florida, Alaska, Illinois and Kansas, Nancy joined GV Wire in July 2019. She previously worked as an assistant metro editor for 13 years at The Fresno Bee. Nancy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her hobbies include singing with the Fresno Master Chorale and volunteering with Fresno Filmworks. You can reach Nancy at 559-492-4087 or Send an Email

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