Flash floods occur when the ground is unable to absorb water creating run off into creek beds, rivers and low lying areas. A dry creek bed can fill with raging waters within a matter of minutes. Floods, nationwide kill more people than any other natural disaster. During a flash flood the current of the water just a foot deep has been enough to cause people to lose control of vehicles.
Here in Arizona the ground is very hard and dry and water does not soak in well. Instead water rapidly accumulates and runs downhill at amazing speeds. The unaware traveler may be under sunny skies and still suffer from flash flood danger. Frequently flash floods occur with little to no warning and your safest move will be to get to high ground quickly. Low lying areas including washes and creek beds will fill up first. Do not attempt to cross water caused by flash floods, each year people and vehicles are swept away by underestimating the depth and power of water.
We have pictures of the wash here in Black Canyon City to illustrate the effects of the recent rainfall and the tremendous change to terrain that it brings. The force of the rushing water can wash away roads changing the access to your claim or making a previously easy trail nearly impassable. The water force during flash flooding will move sand, gravel, rocks, and even trees; sometimes miles before redepositing them. Each heavy rain exposes new bedrock that has never been seen before creating unique and never ending opportunities for mining. The rain and flash flooding cycle is part of what creates widely mineralized areas and placer mining opportunities throughout Arizona as gold is moved from its source, redistributed as mother nature intends.