By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – When you have melting snow and ice, rain, potholes and puddles, it’s enough to stop even the most dedicated runners in their tracks.

“I was expecting more puddles, but yeah this large of one I didn’t expect,” said runner Jason Acosta. “You have to avoid the potholes that are hiding right below the water.”

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The water, in this case, seems to be pouring in from Minnehaha Creek.

“There really is nowhere for that water to drain along the landscape, so this is definitely an area we keep an eye on,” said Telly Mamayek, of the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District.

Since much of the creek experienced major flooding in 2014, the watershed district has been getting specialized forecasts from the National Weather Service.

“That tells us just how much rain is going to fall in our watershed, just how much snowmelt we are going to have. And then we are able to plug that into a computer model and figure out where is the high water going to be,” Mamayek said.

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That information helped city crews find and dislodge an ice jam on the creek Thursday morning, likely preventing further flooding. Basset Creek is another waterway that’s being monitored.

But for once, Mamayek is encouraged by the forecast and is crossing her fingers that today’s flooding is the worst Minnehaha will see.

“The good news is that we are going to dry out. There’s no real meaningful precipitation in the forecast for the next week,” Mamayek said.

That will be good for homes close to the creek, especially some neighborhoods in Edina.

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Having warmer temperatures during the day and below freezing temperatures at night could be good not just for the 22 miles this creek covers, but in other parts of the state as well.

John Lauritsen