Latest Outlook Show Little Chance of Spring Flooding Concerns

Latest Outlook Show Little Chance of Spring Flooding Concerns

February 18, 2021 News -- KRJB-KRJM-KKCQ 0

Grand Forks, ND — The National Weather Service in Grand Forks released their latest spring flooding outlook and all signs so far look promising for the Red River Valley. It’s currently well past the mid-winter mark and conditions are abnormally dry. Snowfall through early February is well below long-term winter season normal amounts. Kevin Ruud of the Wild Rice Watershed District says that other than some nuisance issues in the snow-packed ditches, he doesn’t anticipate any significant flooding concerns this spring.

According to the National Weather Service, the Wild Rice River in Hendrum and Red River in Halstad both have a 5% chance of reaching moderate flooding. So with flooding mostly out of the picture at this point the focus turns to drought. Ruud adds that from a watershed perspective, drought can lead to some overgrowth issues but it could also allow them to get a jumpstart on their wetland projects.

The lack of snow in the fields could also lead to some erosion issues in the spring. Next week’s warmup could melt the thin layer off and expose the black dirt, which could be blown away into the ditches without any cover.

2019 saw a record wet fall, which spearheaded last spring’s Top 10 flooding event. However a dry late summer and fall period in 2020 has depleted any residual soil moisture or streamflow.