Lake Manitoba update: June 25, 2017

Strong winds continue to make estimating the level of Lake Manitoba difficult. The rough estimate is that the level is currently 813.50 feet with north winds driving up the level of the south basin. The current level is roughly the same as last week. It appears that the level of Lake Manitoba is declining very slowly from a peak of roughly 813.7 feet. Lake St. Martin remains at flood level, sitting at 803.30 feet this week. Flow on the Fairford River remains high (11,654 feet), as does flow on the Waterhen River (11,901 cfs). Both rivers are affected by the wind direction. North winds lower the level of the north basin of Lake Manitoba, reducing outflow at Fairford. The same winds push water into the south end of Lake Winnipegosis, causing Waterhen flows to rise. Lake Winnipegosis remains high this week at 834.65 feet which is keeping Waterhen flows high. Flow on the Whitemud River fell this week to 388 cfs. Flow on the Assiniboine fell to 1,907 cfs at Holland but is 3,094 cfs at Headingly. The mismatch suggests a possible gauge error.

River update
Time: 5:30 PM June 25, 2017
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 1,907 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 3,094 cfs
Waterhen: 11,901 cfs
Whitemud: 388 cfs
Fairford: 11,654 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 5:30 PM June 25, 2017
Steep Rock: 813.25 ft
Westbourne: 813.75 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 813.50 ft
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 803.30 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 834.65 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1403.12 ft

Alert: Province issues warning for high Waves of 3 to 5 feet – Advises Property Owners to take Precautions

PROVINCE ISSUES WIND ALERT FOR SOUTH BASIN OF LAKE WINNIPEG,
AREAS OF LAKE MANITOBA
The Hydrologic Forecast Centre of Manitoba Infrastructure reports the lake wind-effect forecast for this afternoon and tomorrow suggests a strong wind-effect warning for the South Basin of Lake Winnipeg and south Lake Manitoba areas.
Wind speed and direction could raise levels by as much as three to five feet with the highest setup occurring as a result of the strongest winds.  In addition, these winds can result in significant wave action on shorelines.
Property owners should take precautions.
– 30 –

AGM Report 

At the Annual General Meeting on June 21 we elected the executive for 2017-18. They are: Jack King, Pres; Scott Greenlay, VP; Alice Dent, Treasurer; Jeannie Gurr, Secretary; Luc Allard and Harry Frederick directors at large. Don Clarkson will continue to serve as past president. Dr. Scott Forbes will continue to provide invaluable analysis and opinion from a science perspective. We thank Destiny Watt who is leaving the executive for her time and energy working on behalf of members.
There was information provided on an Open House (see notice) hosted by Manitoba Infrastructure in Moosehorn on June 29. A second Open House is tentatively scheduled for July 13 in Winnipeg – details to follow. This is your opportunity to receive information and give opinions on the proposed new outlet channel from Watchorn run in conjunction with the existing Lake St Martine outlet.
Jack King 

Lake Manitoba update: June 18, 2017

Wind is playing havoc with the gauges on Lake Manitoba right now, making the current estimate of 813.53 feet highly tentative; Lake St. Martin remains at flood level, rising to 803.33 feet this week. Flow on the Fairford River remains high (11,972 feet), as does flow on the Waterhen River (11,795 cfs). Flow on the Whitemud River rose with this week’s rain to 586 cfs.

Lake Winnipegosis remains high at 834.48 feet. The mean level of Lake Winnipegosis for June 18 is 831.04 feet, so the lake is nearly 3.5 feet above its average level. The lake rose sharply last fall with heavy rain, and has remained high ever since. Overwinter precipitation was not unusually high, but the lake did rise further during the spring freshet. The high level of Lake Winnipegosis will keep Lake Manitoba high for the foreseeable future.

Flow on the Assiniboine fell to 2,154 cfs at Holland but rose to 3,072 cfs at Headingly.

River update
Time: 6:00 PM June 18, 2017
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 2,154 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 3,072 cfs
Waterhen: 11,795 cfs
Whitemud: 586 cfs
Fairford: 11,972 cfs

Lake update
Time: 6:00 pPM June 18, 2017
Steep Rock: 813.25 ft
Westbourne: 813.81 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 813.53 ft
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 803.33 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 834.48 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1402.99 ft

Lake Manitoba update: June 11, 2017

The big news this week is that the Portage Diversion closed (finally) on Monday. Other than that there has been little change. Lake Manitoba remains very high at 813.60 feet; Lake St. Martin remains at flood level (803.33 feet). Flow on the Fairford River remains high (12,572 feet) due to the high level of Lake Manitoba, as does flow on the Waterhen River (11,654 cfs) due to the high level of Lake Winnipegosis. Flow on the Whitemud River, however, has fallen to a trickle (330 cfs). (All the readings reported here are from midnight last night when the winds were relatively calm).

With inflow to the lake at about 12,000 cfs (combined Waterhen and Whitemud flows), the equilibrium level of Lake Manitoba is roughly 813.5 feet. The lake will not go down until the level of Lake Winnipegosis (834.48 feet) falls. The level of Lake Winnipegosis is now slightly below its historical maximum level, observed in 2011. With Lake Winnipegosis still at an extraordinarily high level, more than 3 feet above its average level for this time of year, there is little prospect for a substantial decline in the level of Lake Manitoba in the near future. Evaporation will help, but until the level of Lake Winnipegosis falls, the level of Lake Manitoba will remain high.

Flow on the Assiniboine has fallen dramatically (there was a gauge calibration this week) to 2,472 cfs at Holland and 2,507 cfs at Headingly.

River update
Time: 11:00 AM June 11, 2017
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 2,472 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 2,507 cfs
Waterhen: 11,654 cfs
Whitemud: 330 cfs
Fairford: 12,572 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 11:00 AM June 11, 2017
Steep Rock: 813.55 ft
Westbourne: 813.65 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 813.60 ft
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 803.22 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 834.48 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1402.92 ft