The spring thaw is much underway, and this will continue through the next week as temperatures remain above average. Most of the remaining snow on the ground should finally melt away!
Over the past week, much of the snowpack has melted away. As a result, many fields and ditches have been filling up with water while the river hasn't been affected much. This may bring a sense of comfort flooding-wise, but river levels are now expected to rise as groundwater and snowmelt, makes its way into the river. As of today, Monday 3/21/2022, the Red River in Fargo is at 17.14 feet, and it is going to rise quickly over this week. Forecasts show the Red River rising to 25 feet by this Thursday. At 25 feet, Fargo is considered at the moderate flood stage threshold. By the end of this upcoming weekend, river levels are expected to reach 29.5 feet in Fargo, just a half foot from the major flood stage threshold. Keep in mind sandbagging begins at 36 feet.
We will keep you updated on river levels as new outlooks come out. Hopefully, we can allow some time for river levels to lower before we add in more rain and hopefully not more snow showers. Regarding the LRC, after this system rolls through today and tomorrow, we will stay mostly dry outside of a slight chance for some scattered rain and snow showers Thursday night into Friday morning. Then as for next week, another bigger potential storm is expected to roll through mid to end of next week, around the 31st of March. Then a few potentially big storm systems through April, but things should have leveled out river level-wise by then. The second, third, and fourth image attached below shows the outlook for the Red River in Wahpeton, Grand Forks, and Olso.
Here is a list of some of the closures you will see as river levels rise to the expected almost 30 feet, as reported from the City Of Fargo.
Action Stage (17+ Feet)
• Water rises to the edge of the bike path at El Zagal bowl along Elm St N between 14th and 15th Ave (Fargo)
Minor Flooding (18+ Feet)
• Elm St between 14th and 15th Ave N is closed, and storm sewer pump stations are beginning to operate (Fargo)
• Low-level dam south of Main Ave is underwater (Fargo)
• 3rd Street underpass is closed (Moorhead)
• North Broadway Bridge is closed (Fargo/Moorhead)
• North Broadway bridge floods (Fargo/Moorhead)
Moderate Flooding (25+ Feet)
• City parks and recreation areas along the river begin to flood (Fargo). All storm sewer lift stations are in operation. (Fargo)
• 12th Avenue N/15th Avenue N bridge over Red River closed (Fargo/Moorhead)
Major Flooding (30+ Feet)
• 1st Avenue N underpass is closed (Moorhead)
• Removable floodwalls installed along 2nd Street (Fargo), First Ave N bridge across Red River closed
• Wall Street Avenue N is closed (Moorhead)
• Northern Pacific Ave (Fargo)/Center Ave (Moorhead) bridge clearance
• Sandbagging starts if the river is forecast to rise above 38 ft (Fargo)
• Convent Bridge at 52nd Ave S is closed (Fargo)
• Oakport Street N is closed near 50th Avenue N (Moorhead)
• 28th Avenue North is closed at Ditch #41 (Moorhead)
• 11th Street N is closed near 28th Avenue N (Moorhead)
• 36th Street S bridge and 40th Avenue N bridge over Drain 27 closes (Fargo)
• 25th Street S bridge over Rose Coulee closes (Fargo)
• RECORD FLOOD March 28, 2009 (instantaneous measurement)