Rainy Lake flooding about to set new record


Rainy Lake is expected to surpass 1950 flood levels this week, according to the latest release from the National Weather Service, out of Duluth, MN. Last night’s rain has yet to be fully integrated into the forecast – a new prediction is due tomorrow.

According to the NWS, a rise of 8-11 inches is expected between may 30 and June 5, with a continued rise until at least mid-June. At this rate, Rainy lake is expected to break the all-time record high of 1112.95 feet, set in 1950, later this week.

High water levels are occurring across the Rainy River Basin in northern Minnesota, Ontario and Manitoba. This is a historic flood that has already exceeded the records set in the 2014 flooding.

“It will take a long time for these levels to decrease once they peak (crest), and those experiencing flooding should be prepared for weeks of high water levels through June,” noted the release.

How to help

Sandbagging efforts are underway, and volunteers are needed. The Town of Fort Frances has extended sandbagging hours to 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the public works yard off Wright Ave. Volunteers are asked to check in at the animal shelter on site.

Couchiching First Nation is in need of sandbagging help. Food and water are provided. Two sites have been set up: the band office parking lot and Kirsten’s house on Gabe’s Road. If you need a ride call 276-7708.