MINOT, N.D. - There's been growing concerns over how this winter's snow pack could impact river levels in North Dakota. But the National Weather Service is soothing those concerns, for now.
Allen Schlag with the NWS in Bismarck said three factors impact flood risks following winter—water levels, soil conditions, and how quickly the snow melts in the spring.
He said that, while there is plenty of snow and the ground is frozen, we don't know how the spring will handle the snow pack.
He also said that past winters with a lot of snow have not always led to flooding.
“It is absolutely not a slam dunk that we're going to see widespread flooding on any river basin, whether it's the Souris River Basin, or the Heart, or the Cannonball, or the Knife River- none of them have a guaranteed flood. What we still have is plenty of time to see this very impressive snow pack disappear to sublimation, or in the springtime, maybe we'll have a melt condition where we see it run off very slowly over the course of two or three weeks, as opposed to two or three days,” Schlag said.
The NWS has a graphic with more information on snow and spring flooding in Minot.
You can see it by logging on to: weather.gov/bis and clicking on the ‘short term graphicast in effect’ in the middle of the page.