Snow Melting Begins: Flooding Not Expected
Will flooding be the result of a record amount of snowfall in Minnesota this April? Officials are watching area lakes and rivers closely, especially since the forecast calls for a thaw just a few days after a blizzard.
With royal blue skies, abundant sunshine and mild temperatures returning to the Northwest suburbs, its a perfect combination to begin the slow process of melting all the snow.
“We still currently have over a foot of ice on Lake Minnetonka, but we are getting very late in the season,” said Tiffany Schaufler of the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District. “We know there is a bunch of snow to melt off from last weekend’s snowstorm.”
At the headwaters of Minnehaha Creek, Gray’s Bay Dam was opened for the season on Thursday.
This was done to try and prevent future flooding in the upcoming weeks.
“This is unusual,” Schaufler. “This is the second time we’ve done it in our history.”
Every spring there’s a potential for flooding on the Mississippi River. But according to the National Weather Service, despite all this snow, that’s not a concern at this time. And that’s good news for anyone who lives near the Mississippi in Brooklyn Center or Brooklyn Park. Too much snow can sometimes make a river spill its banks.
“I would say no reason for alarm,” Schaufler said. “It looks like things are in okay shape. I don’t think you’ll see major flooding. Where that might happen is if in two weeks we get some back to back larger precipitation rain events.”
Of course, in the Twin Cities, the weather can change in a Minnesota minute, which is why no on can guarantee that floods won’t happen.
“That’s always the magic question in the spring, what’s going to happen?” Schaufler said. It’s dependent on how much snow we received, how deep the depth is. The biggest unknown every spring is are we going to get rain.”