Recent rainfall, warmer temperatures, and the associated snowmelt will result in elevated water levels across the watershed over the next few days, with a potential for ice jams.
A low-pressure system tracked through the region yesterday bringing rain and strong winds. Rainfall amounts ranging from 15 to 35 mm were recorded throughout the watershed, with heaviest rainfall observed in the east end.
The combination of rain and unseasonably warm temperatures observed yesterday caused the existing snowpack to become saturated, resulting in quick runoff overnight. Snow surveys conducted early yesterday revealed between 35 and 90 mm of water held in the snowpack.
Fluctuations in temperature, recent rainfall, and rising water levels are likely to result in the break-up and movement of river ice. As cooler temperatures resume today and into the weekend, there is a potential for ice jams and flooding in non-traditional areas. Ice jams can occur anywhere within a river system, but typically occur in areas near culverts, bridges, and river bends. Municipal and County staff should monitor local problem areas.
While significant flooding is not expected, rivers could reach bankfull conditions with minor flooding in traditional low-lying areas. Residents are reminded to stay away from all watercourses. Elevated water levels, gusty winds, and icy stream banks will create hazardous conditions near all waterways.
This statement will remain in effect until 8:30 AM on Monday, February 21, 2022, unless local conditions warrant further updates. SVCA will continue to monitor watershed conditions.