Residents and neighbors, many carrying cameras, walked north on the railroad tracks parallel to the Susquehanna to view the water levels and damage.

Port Deposit Mayor Wayne L. Tome Sr. said police were monitoring the tracks — the only access to submerged areas of town — to prevent looting.

On Wednesday, officers arrested several people who were caught stealing guitars out of a condominium, Tome said. "Very swiftly, our police took care of it."

Samantha Brown, 15, who was walking on the railroad tracks Friday morning with a friend, said she helped her parents, owners of the Bees Nest Express Mini-Mart, carry all the food from their store to the second floor. They weren't leaving, because of fears of looters, she said.

"This business is my parents' life," she said.

Harford County Executive David Craig said that flooding in Havre de Grace did not seem quite as high as it was during Isabel in 2003, with "not very much damage at all. There are a lot of people driving into town to take pictures of the water," but police were handling the traffic.

Jeff Harris, owner of Starbird Canvas boating supply on Water Street said there was more than 2 feet of water filling his store. "It's gonna be a lot of work to clean it out."

Harris maintained a lighthearted mood, saying he knows there is nothing he can do to change the situation. "I'm amused," he said. "It ain't a big deal."

Melissa Utter of Aberdeen and her daughters, Autumn and Amanda Camara, marveled at nature's power while in town for a doctor's appointment. "I can't believe the rain can do this," 9-year-old Autumn said as she splashed down Water Street.

Utter said that the family had just moved to Aberdeen from Port Deposit. "We moved just in time," she said.

Mark Hasenei, came back to Havre de Grace on Friday to check on his restaurant, Price's Seafood, and was shocked to find that it had been burglarized.

The restaurant was missing a new 55-inch TV, a laptop and multiple checks. He believes that the combination of flooded roads and a lack of police presence in the partially evacuated town created the perfect opportunity for the robbery.

Havre de Grace police are investigating, and Hasenei plans to reopen as soon as the floodwaters ebb.

"It depends a lot on Mother Nature," he said.

The next major issue the upper Chesapeake will face will be environmental, Craig said.

"With all the sediment that's coming down, that is one of the things that really affected the Chesapeake Bay after Agnes," he said. When the sediment settles, it will adversely affect struggling bay grasses. And decades of accumulated sediment and old chemical pollutants behind the dam will have been scoured and released downstream.

Among the other worries that follow the storm are critters and storm debris.

Biologists urged people not to approach or handle wildlife that was displaced by floodwaters and might be seeking temporary shelter in or near homes and other buildings.

"The best strategy for humans is to leave these animals alone and just allow the waters to return to normal and the animals to do the same," said Paul Peditto, director of the state's Wildlife and Heritage Service.

In Annapolis, harbormaster J.P. "Flip" Walters warned residents with bayfront homes that debris carried through the Conowingo Dam will turn up in the bay and on their property in coming days. He said upriver flooding is worse than during the usual spring thaw and higher tides.