Lake Manitoba update: Sept. 16, 2018

Wind is playing havoc with the gauges on the lakes and so the estimates are really guesstimes today. The level of Lake Manitoba appears to be up this week to 811.24 feet, and should start to rise rapidly, as inflow from the Waterhen River (6,180 cfs) greatly exceeds outflow on the Fairford River (2,190 cfs). Fairford flows are very low right now because the level of the north basin of the lake has been driven down in the wind. The level of Lake St. Martin is 798.95 feet. Lake Winnipegosis is reading 832.51 feet. Flow on the Whitefud River is up to 67 cfs, rising with the rain. Flow on the Assiniboine River is 518 cfs at Holland and 1,010 cfs at Headingly. The level of the Shellmouth Reservoir is down to 1400.95 feet.

River update
Time: 1:00 PM September 16, 2018
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 518 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 1,010 cfs
Waterhen: 6,180 cfs
Whitemud: 67 cfs
Fairford: 2,190 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 1:00 PM September 16, 2018
Steep Rock: 810.96 ft
Westbourne: 811.52 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 811.24
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 798.95 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 832.51 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1400.95 ft

Reminder of AGM and important message from our President

I would like to remind members and Associations that our AGM will elect a new executive on September 26 at the St John Ambulance Training Centre with doors opening at 6:30pm and a start time of 7pm.

While we are enjoying lake levels in the lower end of the operating range, we have an important role to advocate for the completion of the Lake Manitoba-Lake St Martin channel. The environmental impact assessment process is on-going with consultation meetings of affected property owners and stakeholders around the lakes. The funding is in place. However, we cannot relax until ‘shovels are in the ground’.

The executive will urge the Province to restore flow from the Fairford Water Control System reduced to complete rehabilitation of the structure. As last year, the draw down of the Shellmouth Reservoir will create some storage capacity for the spring freshet. With an extended completion date for the new channel, it is important to use these mitigation efforts to protect stakeholders.

We need your support and participation in electing an executive that will carry on the work begun in 2011. We can see the finish line but have learned over the years to take nothing for granted.

“there’s no harm in hoping for the best as long as you’re prepared for the worst.” (S. King)

Jack King

President, Association of Lake Manitoba Stakeholders

Lake Manitoba update: Sept. 9, 2018

SE winds are pushing water around in Lake Manitoba making the current estimate of lake level (811.16 feet) iffy. The level of the south basin much lower than the north basin right now. With high water in the north basin, flow on the Fairford River has risen to 4,662 cfs this afternoon. Inflow from the Waterhen River remains above average at 5,580 cfs. The level of Lake St. Martin is down slightly to 798.65 feet. Lake Winnipegosis is also down slightly to 832.09 feet – its level remans above average and that is keeping flow on the Waterhen River also above average. Flow on the Whitefud River is currently 30 cfs. Flow on the Assiniboine River is 644 cfs at Holland and 918 cfs at Headingly: average flow for this time of year is about 1,500 cfs. The level of the Shellmouth Reservoir has fallen to 1401.26 feet.

River update
Time: 3:00 PM September 9, 2018
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 644 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 918 cfs
Waterhen: 5,580 cfs
Whitemud: 30 cfs
Fairford: 4,662 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 3:00 PM September 9, 2018
Steep Rock: 811.45 ft
Westbourne: 810.86 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 811.16
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 799.65 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 832.09 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1401.26 ft

Notice of AGM – and an update from the President.

The Annual General Meeting will reconvene on September 26 at the St. John Ambulance Training Centre  –  1 St. John’s Ambulance Way on the South side of Portage off the Empress Overpass across from Polo Park Centre. Doors open at 6:30pm with the meeting beginning at 7pm.

The purpose of the meeting will be the election of an executive. The constitution can be found at lakemanitobaassociation.wordpress.com/constitution/

SECTION A.    The Executive Board shall be comprised of the past president, and the following elected officers: president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, and two directors.

Members of participant associations are encouraged to forward names of nominees to Don Clarkson dclarkson@invacare.com . All members of associations may attend as observers with a maximum of three delegates to the Annual Meeting to move motions, participate in debate and vote.

At present both the president and vice-president positions will be vacant with the departure of Scott Greenlay and Jack King. Soctt has been an active founding member of the executive and will be missed. With Jack moving to past-president, Don Clarkson may retire from the executive. Jeannie Gurr, secretary, Alice Dent, treasurer and Harry Frederick, director have indicated a willingness to continue subject to the election.

Ours is an important voice in the discussion of the proposed Lake Manitoba-Lake St. Martin Channel. In the past while advocating for the completion of a northern egress from the lake, we lobbied the government for short-term mitigation: allowing full flows from the Fairford Water Control System over the winter months, drawing down the Shellmouth Reservoir to create storage capacity for spring run-off and limiting the use of the Portage Diversion. The present government has accepted these recommendations with positive results.

The regular reports on lake levels posted by Dr. Scott Forbes have kept members informed. The participation of executive members at virtually all government-sponsored open houses ensures that member concerns and opinions are voiced. Adopting a ‘shoulder-to shoulder’ approach over a ‘nose-to-nose’ confrontation has built positive working relations with government.

With the on-going environmental assessment and an extended time-frame for completion, it is important that the Association remains viable. Current lake levels are within the operating range giving us peace of mind from thoughts of flooding. However, Lake Winnipegosis levels are historically high and strain the capacity of Fairford to handle that inflow. Recent history and changing severe weather patterns caution against complacency.

The Association of Lake Manitoba Stakeholders needs to continue its work. We need member associations to participate to ensure that our goal of having a managed water level for Lake Manitoba becomes a reality.

Jack King

president

Lake Manitoba update: Sept. 3, 2018

Lake Manitoba is up on the week to 811.29 feet, as is outflow at Fairford that is now 3,743 cfs. Inflow from the Waterhen River is up slightly to 5,862 cfs. The level of Lake St. Martin is down further to 798.72 feet, the lowest the lake has been since early 2005. Lake Winnipegosis is up slightly to 832.22 feet, and that is keeping flow on the Waterhen River high. The Whitefud River has sprung back to life and is now flowing at 35 cfs. Flow on the Assiniboine rose midweek with the rain and is now dropping again, currently 480 cfs at Holland and 796 cfs at Headingly: average flow for this time of year is about 1,500 cfs. The gauge on the Shellmouth Reservoir is currently offline.

River update
Time: 10:00 AM September 3, 2018
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 480 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 706 cfs
Waterhen: 5,862 cfs
Whitemud: 35 cfs
Fairford: 3,743 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 10:00 AM September 3, 2018
Steep Rock: 811.39 ft
Westbourne: 811.19 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 811.29
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 798.72 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 832.22 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: gauge offline

Lake Manitoba update: August 25, 2018

Another dry week sees conditions that we have not seen for nearly a decade and a half. Lake Manitoba has fallen to 811.11 feet. The lake was last below 811.0 feet during the dry spell between 2002 to 2004. While boaters may not like low lake levels, the low levels benefit lakeside property owners who lost a portion of their property during the flood years of 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014 due to wind and wave erosion. We are now seeing rebuilding of beachside areas through the accretion (deposition) of sand.

Outflow at Fairford continues to decline and is now 2,825 cfs. Inflow from the Waterhen River is substantially higher at 5,721 cfs – it is evaporation and dry weather that is keeping the lake level low right now. When temperatures cool in the fall and the rains begin again, the lake will begin to rise. The level of Lake St. Martin is down to 798.95 feet, the lowest the lake has been since early 2005. Lake Winnipegosis remains high at 832.15 feet, and that is keeping flow on the Waterhen River high. The Whitefud River has – according to the gauges – stopped flowing: it is registering 0 cfs. Flow on the Assiniboine is now well below average for late August and is now 477 cfs at Holland and 494 cfs at Headingly: average flow for this time of year is about 1,500 cfs. The Shellmouth Reservoir is down this week to 1402.43 feet.

River update
Time: 7:00 AM August 25, 2018
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 477 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: 494 cfs
Waterhen: 5,721 cfs
Whitemud: 0 cfs
Fairford: 2,825 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 7:00 AM August 25, 2018
Steep Rock: 811.12 ft
Westbourne: 811.09 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 811.11
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 798.95 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 832.15 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1402.43 ft

Lake Manitoba update: August 19, 2018

Another week of dry weather and another week of little change. Manitoba is up slightly this week to currently sitting at 811.43 feet. Outflow at Fairford is currently 3,532 cfs compared to inflow on the Waterhen River at 6,710 cfs. The level of Lake St. Martin is down to 799.18 feet. Lake Winnipegosis remains high at 833.17 feet, and that is keeping flow on the Waterhen River high. The Whitefud River has almost stopped flowing and is down to 5 cfs. Flow on the Assiniboine continues to decline and is now 487 cfs at Holland: the gauge at Headingly is currently offline. The Shellmouth Reservoir is down this week at 1402.53 feet.

River update
Time: 5:00 PM August 19, 2018
Portage Diversion: closed
Assiniboine at Holland: 487 cfs
Assiniboine at Headingly: gauge offline
Waterhen: 6,710 cfs
Whitemud: 5 cfs
Fairford: 3,532 cfs
 
Lake update
Time: 5:00 PM August 19, 2018
Steep Rock: 811.25 ft
Westbourne: 811.60 ft
Mean level Lake Manitoba: 811.43
Lake Manitoba desired operating range: 810.5 to 812.5 ft
Lake St. Martin: 799.518 ft
Lake St. Martin desired operating range: 797.0 to 800.0 ft
Lake Winnipegosis: 833.17 ft
Shellmouth Reservoir: 1402.53 ft