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Friday, June 17, 2011

Heavy Rains in North Dakota Could Mean More Water Released to Flooded Missouri

In addition to the myriad things that I watch these days are the rainfalls in the upper Missouri River basin...

Heavy rains have fallen over generally isolated areas of the Dakotas over the past week to 10 days.

Although local stream levels rose- in some cases to or above flood stage- lack of larger-area heavy rains kept the effects mostly to a minimum in downstream locations.

However- the un-damed part of the Missouri river from it's confluence near St. Louis MO to the Gavin's Point dam near Yankton SD is filling- to full to overflowing.

Two of the 6 'Pick-Sloan' reservoirs are near to above maximum flood control pools- and today's readings still showed more water coming into them that what is coming out- which ranges from about 140000 to 151000 cubic feet per second.

The exception is the largest of the 6 Pick-Sloan projects- Fort Peck dam in eastern Montana- whose releases are only around 65000 cfs- but the reservoir behind the dam is more than 2 feet above maximum flood storage.

That leads us to the latest on the Missouri River Flood of 2011:

More heavy rains are forecast for the upper Missouri- specifically in western and northwestern North Dakota.

According to the story in Thursday's BISMARCK (ND) TRIBUNE-  those heavy rains "could push release levels above the planned 150,000 cfs at Garrison and other dams-" according to "a conference call with the Corps" of Engineer (USACE).

Meaning even more dam water in an already flooding river.

(Photos by Ken Yetter. More of Mr. Yetter's photos of flooding in and around Bismarck ND can be found HERE)

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