Ericson Dam in Wheeler County, Nebraska failed Sunday evening, June 13th.   Water levels at Ericson Lake reached its capacity of 360 acre feet, and water flowed into the emergency spillway.  Erosion started along the spillway before 8 pm, and the spillway breached at 904 pm, causing water to drain from the lake into the Cedar River.  Flooding along the Cedar River commenced, and at 945 pm CDT, the flood waters reached the Wheeler and Greeley County line, and 6 inches of water flowed over the Highway 281 bridge.   Flooding continued downstream along the river to Spalding, and Spalding Lake reached its capacity on Monday, June 14th, and water occasionally overtopped Spalding Dam.

Considerable flooding occurred along the Cedar River and several county roads or bridges were washed out in Greeley County in the Spalding area.  The Cedar River is gauged northwest of Spalding, and the river rose above its 7 foot flood stage just before midnight on June 13th.  The river crested at 8.47 feet during the predawn hours on June 14th, and remained in flood June 15th and 16th, before receding and falling below flood stage just before midnight on the 17th.

Farther downstream on the Cedar River near Fullerton, the river rose to its 9 foot flood stage during the predawn hours on June 15th, and crested at 9.31 feet in the morning.  The river fell below flood stage around mid day.  

The map below shows the location of Ericson Dam, and the photographs depict the flooding along the Cedar River and in Spalding. Click on any image to enlarge.

   
Point A is the location of
Ericson Dam.

Cedar River flooding near Spalding. Photos taken by the
Nebraska Department of Natural Resources. 

     
Cedar River flooding near Spalding. Photos taken by the
Nebraska Department of Natural Resources.

     
 Flooding in Spalding.  Photos taken by Marlynn Scheef.
     
Flooding in Spalding.  Photos taken by Marlynn Scheef.


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