High Water Levels
Water levels around the metro are finally beginning to drop, but boat traffic is still slow on Lake Minnetonka. The “no wake” rule has been in effect for weeks, including the Fourth of July weekend. It’s often the busiest weekend of the year for businesses along the lake, but “no wake” means less business to go around.
The brimming water level on Lake Superior has led a Canadian-U.S. regulatory board to increase the outflow through gates on the St. Marys River at Sault Ste. Marie. The International Lake Superior Board of Control says the flow setting of the control structure at the head of the St. Marys Rapids will increase Wednesday, and it warms anglers to beware of changing flow and water levels.
After another round of rain this weekend, officials are reminding Minnesotans of the dangers on lakes and rivers when waters are high. When Robert Duncanson fell out of his canoe, he held onto a tree branch along the river. But the current was too much, and the branch snapped before help arrived.
Lake residents in parts of east central Minnesota are hoping for drier weather soon as high water remains a big problem for many near Green Lake in Isanti County. High water is typical of many lakes in Isanti, Chisago and Anoka Counties. Heavy spring rains and snowmelt have swollen lake levels, putting a pinch in the start of the boating season.
A frustrating Fourth of July is in store for some Twin Cities families. Several lakes and rivers have dangerously high water levels in addition to storm debris floating on or just below the surface. The water is moving so fast that the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis and near Minnehaha Park has been off limits to all boaters for the last ten days. The locks for commercial barges just reopened Wednesday, but recreational boating is still prohibited.
Despite the nice weather this week, some Twin Cities lakes remain very quiet. That’s because water levels are high and boaters are being asked to take it easy.