Area rivers rising from snowmelt during warmer weekend temperatures


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — With temperatures soaring well above normal this weekend, expect some significant rises on area rivers. Meteorologist Brian Karstens has the details.

We don’t need a flake of snow or a drop of rain to start flooding this spring. But the way we melt the snow may make all the difference in the severity.

First, the current snow cover shows a lot of snow still on the ground in the northeast. Watertown will start the weekend with about a foot to melt.

As the melting kicks into high gear, the James River will see the most significant rises. Take a closer look at the James River forecast at Huron. You’ll see a big jump in the levels by Tuesday and Wednesday to major flood stage. This appears to be the worst river flooding in KELOLAND.

Other rivers will be rising, including the Big Sioux in Sioux Falls. However, this will be a slow rise into the minor flood stage level through the middle of next week.

The biggest key is avoiding any major precipitation as we start the melting. So far, our 10 forecast still lacks major precipitation. This is a huge difference over last year at this time.

We’ll continue to closely watch these factors, but we’ll remain focused on the good news emerging in the short-term forecast.

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