Text of First 2008 Flood Outlook

...SPRING FLOOD AND WATER RESOURCES OUTLOOK...
 
THE FIRST TWO SECTIONS OF THIS OUTLOOK COVER THE RED RIVER OF THE
NORTH AND DEVILS LAKE BASINS IN EASTERN NORTH DAKOTA AND WESTERN
MINNESOTA ALONG WITH SPECIFIC BASIN HYDROLOGIC CONDITIONS. THE
THIRD SECTION GIVES A SUMMARY OF LARGER SCALE CONDITIONS AND
PROJECTIONS WHICH CONTRIBUTED TO THIS OUTLOOK.
 
THIS OUTLOOK IS VALID FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 28 TO JUNE 2, 2008.
IT WILL BE UPDATED THROUGHOUT THE LATE WINTER AND EARLY SPRING PERIOD
AND COULD CHANGE AS CONDITIONS WARRANT.
 
ACTUAL FLOOD WARNINGS AND 7-DAY RIVER FORECASTS WILL ALSO BE ISSUED
DURING THE SPRING SNOWMELT PERIOD WHEN RIVER FORECAST LOCATIONS ARE
IN FLOOD OR FORECAST TO RISE ABOVE MINOR FLOOD STAGE.
 
 
SECTION 1. THE RED RIVER BASIN...MINOR FLOODING EXPECTED.
 
MOST POINTS ALONG THE MAINSTEM RED RIVER CAN EXPECT SPRING SNOWMELT
FLOODING NEAR THE MINOR FLOOD LEVEL FOR THEIR AREA. MOST POINTS
ALONG THE TRIBUTARIES IN WESTERN MINNESOTA AND EASTERN NORTH DAKOTA
CAN EXPECT SPRING SNOWMELT FLOODING NEAR TO BELOW THE MINOR FLOOD
LEVEL FOR THEIR AREA...AS PER THE FOLLOWING TABLE.
 
IN THE TABLE BELOW...THE STAGE VALUES IN THE 90 THROUGH 10 PERCENT
COLUMNS CORRESPOND TO THE CHANCES THAT THE RIVER WILL RISE ABOVE
THOSE GIVEN STAGES FOR THAT RIVER LOCATION DURING THE VALID PERIOD.
 
EXAMPLE: THE RED RIVER AT WAHPETON HAS A FLOOD STAGE OF 10 FEET. IN
THE NEXT 90 DAYS THERE IS A 50 PERCENT CHANCE THAT THE RED RIVER AT
WAHPETON WILL RISE ABOVE 10.3 FEET AND ONLY A 10 PERCENT CHANCE THAT

IT WILL RISE ABOVE 12.1 FEET.

 

                           RED RIVER BASIN

                   LONG-RANGE PROBABILISTIC OUTLOOK

                VALID FEBRUARY 25, 2008 - JUNE 2, 2008

 

      CHANCE OF EXCEEDING STAGES AT MAINSTEM RED RIVER LOCATIONS

 

LOCATION   FS(FT)   90%    80%    70%    60%    50%    40%    30%    20%    10%

--------     ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---

 WAHPETON ND   10    8.6    9.4    9.5    9.7   10.3   10.8   11.2   11.4   12.1

 FARGO ND      18   17.0   17.6   18.6   19.0   19.6   20.7   22.8   24.0   27.9

 HALSTAD ND    26   13.5   14.5   16.4   17.4   18.7   20.8   22.1   24.0   27.3

 GRAND FORKS   28   21.4   22.9   24.7   27.8   29.7   31.9   32.8   37.4   40.1

 OSLO MN       26   20.1   22.4   24.7   28.2   29.8   31.7   32.1   33.5   34.1

 DRAYTON ND    32   20.8   22.3   25.2   27.0   28.4   30.6   34.1   36.7   39.2

 PEMBINA ND    42   28.6   31.9   35.1   36.5   39.5   42.3   43.6   45.0   46.3

 

 

     CHANCE OF EXCEEDING STAGES AT MINNESOTA TRIBUTARY LOCATIONS

 

LOCATION   FS(FT)   90%    80%   70%    60%    50%    40%    30%    20%    10%

--------     ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---

SO FORK BUFFALO RIVER...

 SABIN         12   12.4   12.6   13.0   13.1   13.3   13.6   13.8   14.1   14.6

BUFFALO RIVER...

 HAWLEY         7    5.5    5.9    6.2    6.7    7.0    7.4    8.0    8.4    9.2

 DILWORTH      12   13.3   14.1   15.1   16.0   16.6   17.7   18.4   18.9   20.4

WILD RICE RIVER...

 TWIN VALLEY   10    5.5    5.8    6.4    6.6    6.9    7.2    7.7    8.7   10.7

 HENDRUM       20   14.7   16.6   17.8   18.9   19.9   21.1   22.4   24.7   28.8

MARSH RIVER...

 SHELLY        14    7.2    8.0    8.6    9.0    9.4   10.7   11.7   13.2   18.3

SAND HILL RIVER...

 CLIMAX        20    3.6    3.6    3.6    4.8    6.2    9.6   10.1   12.9   15.4

RED LAKE RIVER...

 HIGHLANDING   12    9.2    9.3    9.5    9.5    9.7    9.8    9.8   10.0   10.2

 CROOKSTON     15   11.0   11.8   12.9   13.6   14.1   14.8   16.1   18.1   21.3

SNAKE RIVER...

 WARREN       845  842.3  842.5  842.6   842.7  842.7  842.8  842.9  843.1 844.3

 ALVARADO     106  100.7  101.2  101.4   102.5  102.7  103.5  104.1  105.7 107.5

TWO RIVERS RIVER...

 HALLOCK      802  802.4  803.1  804.6  805.1   805.5  805.8  806.4  807.7 808.8

ROSEAU RIVER...

 ROSEAU        16    8.2    8.6    9.3    9.7   10.1   10.7   11.1   11.9   14.2

 

 

    CHANCE OF EXCEEDING STAGES AT NORTH DAKOTA TRIBUTARY LOCATIONS

 

LOCATION   FS(FT)   90%    80%    70%    60%    50%    40%    30%    20%    10%

--------     ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---    ---

WILD RICE RIVER...

 ABERCROMBIE   10    3.1    3.8    4.4    4.7    5.8    7.6    8.5   12.2   17.7

SHEYENNE RIVER...

 VALLEY CITY   15    3.6    4.1    4.6    5.5    5.9    6.6    6.9    7.3    8.9

 LISBON        11    3.2    3.6    4.3    5.4    5.6    6.5    7.1    7.8   11.2

 KINDRED       16    3.9    4.4    5.7    6.4    7.5    8.3    8.9   11.2   14.2

 HARWOOD      884  872.7  874.1  875.2  875.7  877.0  878.0  878.9  880.3  884.1

 WEST FARGO    18   12.2   13.3   14.2   14.5   15.8   17.1   18.4   19.2   20.0

MAPLE RIVER...

 ENDERLIN       9    5.4    6.0    6.6    7.2    7.6    8.2    8.7    9.3   10.4

 MAPLETON     905  898.8  899.8  900.4  901.5  902.2  903.2  903.7  904.6  906.9

GOOSE RIVER...

 HILLSBORO     10    3.7    4.2    4.3    4.9    5.5    5.9    6.7    8.0   10.3

FOREST RIVER...

 MINTO          6    2.2    2.3    2.7    2.9    3.2    3.5    4.2    4.7    6.2

PARK RIVER...

 GRAFTON       12    8.7    8.9    9.1    9.4   10.3   11.9   12.9   13.5   16.8

PEMBINA RIVER...

 WALHALLA      11    4.7    5.1    5.7    6.3    6.7    7.2    8.5   10.5   11.7

 NECHE         18    8.4    9.1   10.8   11.5   12.5   13.3   15.6   19.1   20.4

 
 
RED RIVER BASIN HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY...
 
TOPSOIL MOISTURE IS SOMEWHAT LOW. NOAA SURVEY AIRCRAFT DETECTED ROUGHLY
20 TO 25 PERCENT SOIL MOISTURE IN THE UPPER 20 CM USING GAMMA SENSORS
IN EARLY NOVEMBER...PRIOR TO SNOW COVER...ACROSS MOST OF THE BASIN.
SINCE THEN...WILKIN COUNTY REPORTS THE TOP FOOT OF SOIL IS BONE DRY
IN THE HEADWATERS OF THE RED RIVER VALLEY.
 
THE PALMER DROUGHT INDEX FOR THE RED RIVER BASIN IS NEAR NORMAL. THE
PALMER DROUGHT INDEX TYPICALLY MEASURES DEEPER SOIL MOISTURE AND
REFLECTS SOME OF THE EXCESS MOISTURE ACCUMULATED FROM PRIOR WET YEARS.
 
SNOWPACK IS SOMEWHAT BELOW NORMAL. THE SNOWPACK WAS EARLY THIS WINTER
SEASON AND QUITE EXTENSIVE. ACROSS THE BASIN...THE NORMAL WATER
EQUIVALENT FOR NOVEMBER THROUGH FEBRUARY RANGES FROM TWO TO THREE
INCHES FROM NORTHWEST TO SOUTHEAST. CURRENTLY THE MODELED WATER
EQUIVALENT IN THE SNOWPACK IS JUST A LITTLE OVER TWO INCHES FOR THE
ENTIRE VALLEY. THEREFORE THE WATER IN THE CURRENT SNOWPACK IS FROM
ONE HALF TO ONE INCH BELOW NORMAL.
 
WINTER TEMPERATURES HAVE BEEN COLDER THAN NORMAL. GRAND FORKS AND
FARGO HAVE RECORDED FROM 400 (NORTH) TO 600 (SOUTH) HEATING DEGREE
DAYS MORE THAN NORMAL...FOR THE PERIOD FROM DECEMBER 1ST TO FEBRUARY
21ST. NORMAL VALUES RANGE FROM 4600 (NORTH) TO 4100 (SOUTH) DURING
THIS PERIOD. LAST YEAR THESE VALUES WERE VERY CLOSE TO NORMAL.
SEE THE DEFINITIONS SECTION FOR AN EXPLANATION OF HEATING DEGREE
DAY.
 
FROST DEPTHS ARE NEAR NORMAL...RANGING FROM 2 TO 3 FEET. THE EARLY
AND EXTENSIVE SNOWPACK HAS LARGELY PREVENTED THE EXCESSIVE COLD FROM
PENETRATING MORE DEEPLY INTO THE SOILS THAN NORMAL.
 
 
SECTION 2. THE DEVILS LAKE BASIN...SLIGHT LAKE RISES EXPECTED.
 
DEVILS LAKE AND STUMP LAKE HAVE EQUALIZED AND ARE AT A LEVEL OF
ABOUT 1447 FEET...WHICH IS DOWN FROM A HIGH LAST JUNE OF 1447.95 FEET
AND A RECORD HIGH OF 1449.20 FEET IN MAY OF 2006.
 
THE FOLLOWING TABLES PROVIDE BOTH HIGH AND LOW WATER OUTLOOKS FOR
DEVILS LAKE AND STUMP LAKE. A HIGH WATER OUTLOOK GIVES THE CHANCE
OF WATER RISING ABOVE A CERTAIN LEVEL...IN THIS CASE BOTH DEVILS
LAKE AND STUMP LAKE COULD RISE BY HALF A FOOT OR SO BY MID SUMMER.
 
THE LOW WATER OUTLOOK GIVES THE CHANCE OF WATER FALLING BELOW A
CERTAIN LEVEL...IN THIS CASE BOTH LAKES COULD ALSO FALL BY HALF A
FOOT OR SO BELOW CURRENT LEVELS BY LATE SUMMER.
 
              CHANCES OF DEVILS AND STUMP LAKES RISING ABOVE
                        THE GIVEN LAKE LEVELS
 
             VALID FEBRUARY 26, 2008 - SEPTEMBER 30, 2008
 
             90%    80%    70%    60%    50%    40%    30%    20%    10%
----------- ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CREEL BAY   1447.2 1447.3 1447.4 1447.5 1447.6 1447.7 1447.7 1448.0 1448.6
 
STUMP LAKE  1447.2 1447.3 1447.4 1447.5 1447.6 1447.7 1447.7 1448.0 1448.6
 
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IS NOW INCLUDING CHANCES THAT DEVILS
AND STUMP LAKES WILL FALL BELOW LEVELS GIVEN IN THE PROBABILITY OF
NON-EXCEEDANCE TABLE BELOW:
 
            CHANCES OF DEVILS AND STUMP LAKES FALLING BELOW
                         THE GIVEN LAKE LEVELS
 
             90%    80%    70%    60%    50%    40%    30%    20%    10%
----------- ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------ ------
CREEL BAY   1446.8 1446.8 1446.8 1446.7 1446.6 1446.5 1446.4 1446.2 1446.0
 
STUMP LAKE  1446.8 1446.8 1446.8 1446.7 1446.6 1446.5 1446.4 1446.2 1446.0
 
 
...DEVILS LAKE BASIN HYDROLOGIC SUMMARY...
 
SOIL CONDITIONS IN THE BASIN WERE SLIGHTLY DRY ENTERING THE WINTER AS
REFLECTED BY THE U.S. DROUGHT MONITOR PRODUCT. DESPITE NEAR NORMAL
PRECIPITATION THIS WINTER...PRECIPITATION LAST FALL WAS 1 TO 2 INCHES
BELOW NORMAL. NOAA SURVEY AIRCRAFT DETECTED ROUGHLY 20 TO 25 PERCENT
SOIL MOISTURE IN THE UPPER 20 CM USING GAMMA SENSORS IN EARLY NOVEMBER
...PRIOR TO SNOW COVER. SNOW WATER EQUIVALENT VALUES RANGE FROM ABOUT
1.5 INCHES IN THE SOUTH TO 2 INCHES IN THE NORTH AND NEARLY 2.5 INCHES
IN THE NORTHEAST...WHICH IS VERY NEAR NORMAL ON AVERAGE. THE U.S
DROUGHT MONITOR IS A COOPERATIVE EFFORT BETWEEN THE NWS...THE
USDA AND THE NATIONAL DROUGHT MITIGATION CENTER.
 
 
SECTION 3. WHAT WENT INTO THIS OUTLOOK.
 
8 TO 14 DAY WEATHER OUTLOOK FOR THE NORTHERN GREAT PLAINS...
 
THE OUTLOOK FOR FRIDAY FEBRUARY 29TH THROUGH THURSDAY MARCH 6TH IS
FOR BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURES AND ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION.
 
CLIMATE OUTLOOK FOR SPRING 2008...
 
AT THE END OF THE 2007 GROWING SEASON DRY CONDITIONS HAD COVERED
MUCH OF THE DEVILS LAKE BASIN...NORTHEAST NORTH DAKOTA AND PARTS OF
THE WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA LAKES COUNTRY. AT THE END OF NOVEMBER
STREAM FLOWS WERE BELOW TO MUCH BELOW NORMAL FOR MOST OF THE RIVERS
AND STREAMS IN THE RED RIVER BASIN. WHILE DIFFICULT TO ASCERTAIN
DURING THE WINTER SEASON...LOW FLOWS HAVE PERSISTED BELOW THE ICE
ON THE MAIN STEM RED AND MOST POINTS ON THE MAJOR TRIBUTARIES.
 
WINTER PRECIPITATION HAS BEEN BELOW TO MUCH BELOW NORMAL IN THE
AREAS THAT WERE THE DRIEST AT FALL FREEZE UP...WITH THE ENTIRE
RED RIVER AND DEVILS LAKE BASINS HAVING BELOW NORMAL WINTER
PRECIPITATION.
 
THE CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER...CPC...INDICATES A MODERATE LA NINA
IS OCCURRING IN THE EQUATORIAL PACIFIC. BASED ON DATA FROM THE CPC
AS WELL AS LOCAL RESEARCH...MARCH WILL FAVOR A CONTINUATION OF THE
BELOW NORMAL TEMPERATURE TREND COMMON THIS WINTER. PRECIPITATION IS
EXPECTED TO BE ABOVE THE LONG TERM AVERAGE.
 
THE SPRING MONTHS OF APRIL AND MAY WILL LIKELY SEE BELOW NORMAL
TEMPERATURES WITH SLIGHTLY ABOVE NORMAL PRECIPITATION.
HISTORICALLY...THE SPRING SEASONS THAT FOLLOW MODERATE LA NINA
EVENTS ARE COLDER AND WETTER THAN NORMAL.
 
THE OUTLOOK PRODUCTION PROCESS...
 
THIS LONG RANGE PROBABILISTIC OUTLOOK IS BASED ON A SERIES OF PEAK
RIVER LEVELS TAKEN FROM THE FORECAST RESULTS OF THE NWS ENSEMBLE
STREAMFLOW MODEL. THE MODEL IS RUN FOR MULTIPLE SCENARIOS USING
CURRENT RIVER...SNOW AND SOIL CONDITIONS COMBINED WITH ABOUT 50
YEARS OF PAST PRECIPITATION AND TEMPERATURE CONDITIONS EXPERIENCED
DURING THE OUTLOOK PERIOD...AND COMPARED AGAINST CURRENT SPRING
TEMPERATURE AND PRECIPITATION OUTLOOKS.
 
PROVIDING A RANGE OF RIVER LEVEL PROBABILITIES BASED ON CURRENT
CONDITIONS AND PAST SPRING WEATHER GIVES THE EXPECTED AMOUNT OF
RISK WHICH THEN HELPS WITH LONG RANGE FLOOD PLANNING AND RESPONSE
READINESS. THIS OUTLOOK IS A PART OF NOAA/S NATIONAL WEATHER
SERVICE/S AHPS (ADVANCED HYDROLOGIC PREDICTION SERVICES).
 
NWS FLOOD TERMS AND DEFINITIONS...
 
MINOR FLOODING INDICATES THAT MINIMAL OR NO PROPERTY DAMAGE.
HOWEVER...SOME INCONVENIENCE TO THE PUBLIC IS POSSIBLE.
 
MODERATE FLOODING INDICATES THAT SECONDARY ROADS MAY BE UNDER
FLOOD WATERS AND SOME PROPERTY MAY HAVE TO BE MOVED TO HIGHER
GROUND. SOME EVACUATIONS MAY BE REQUIRED.
 
MAJOR FLOODING INDICATES THAT LARGE AREAS MAY BE FLOODED AND
PRIMARY ROADS MAY BE UNDER WATER. EVACUATION OF PEOPLE AND
LIVESTOCK MAY BE REQUIRED IN FLOODED AREAS.
 
A HEATING DEGREE DAY IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE AVERAGE
TEMPERATURE AND THE REFERENCE TEMPERATURE OF 65 DEGREES
FAHRENHEIT. WHEN THE AVERAGE TEMPERATURE IS BELOW 65 F...
THE RESULT IS POSITIVE THUS IT IS AN INDICATOR OF THE
PUBLIC HEATING DEMAND. THE CUMULATIVE HEATING DEGREE DAYS
IS AN INDICATION OF HOW MUCH WARMER OR COLDER IT IS
COMPARED TO A NORMAL HEATING SEASON.
 
NEXT OUTLOOK AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION SOURCES...
 
THE AHPS LONG RANGE PROBABALISTIC OUTLOOKS ARE ISSUED EACH MONTH.
THEY ARE TYPICALLY ISSUED DURING THE LATER PART OF THE MONTH...
HOWEVER...THE NEXT OUTLOOK WILL BE ISSUED ON FRIDAY...7 MARCH 2008.
 
THIS OUTLOOK IS ALSO PRESENTED AS GRAPHS OF THE PROBABILITY OF STAGE
EXCEEDANCE FOR THE FULL PERIOD AND FOR WEEKLY INTERVALS DURING THE
PERIOD. THESE GRAPHS AND EXPLANATIONS THAT HELP INTERPRETING THEM
ARE AVAILABLE FROM THE NWS GRAND FORKS AHPS WEB PAGE ON THE
INTERNET AT:
                  WWW.WEATHER.GOV/GRANDFORKS
 
THEN CLICK ON THE "RIVERS AND LAKES AHPS" LINK IN THE LEFT MENU.
 
CURRENT RIVER CONDITIONS FOR ALL RIVER FORECAST POINTS IN THE RED
RIVER OF THE NORTH AND DEVILS/STUMP LAKE CONDITIONS ARE ALSO
AVAILABLE ON OUR WEB SITE...AS WELL AS THE 7-DAY FORECASTS WHEN
THE RIVER AT THE FORECAST POINT IS IN OR NEAR FLOOD.
 
IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS...CONTACT THE NWS AT 701-772-0720.
 
 


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