Time to check in on the river levels

Meteorologist Erik Dean is talking about the river levels for select spots across the Black Hills Region.

Before we go into the discussion, I have to say, it’s kind of ironic how this topic came to mind. My music playlist chose the topic this afternoon. If you’re a 90s kid, all I have to say is “Don’t go chasing waterfalls, please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you’re used to.”

So, guess what we are going to talk about? The rivers and the lakes that we’re used to!

Let’s dive in.  It’s no secret that we’ve seen a little bit of precipitation across the Black Hills Region over the past few days. How is it affecting the river levels? Let’s check in with a select few places across the area and see how they are holding up. This will also give you a perspective on just how much moisture we need. I do want to give a disclaimer on this: some sensors don’t show all of this information on the charts therefore, I only put up a select few that has all of the information tethered to it.

Stop # 1: Bear Butte Creek in Boulder Canyon:
Bous2 Hg
Bear Butte Creek as of Wednesday is sitting at 3.78′ and it’s been holding steady over the past few days. The flood stage for this location is 6.5′. The last time we hit flood stage here was on July 4th, 2019 where it reached 7.86′

Stop # 2: Boxelder Creek near Rapid City
Bnrs2 Hg
Boxelder Creek as of 3 PM Wednesday is sitting at 29.71′. Flood stage is 33.5′. In 2019, we had the highest crest recorded at this site. (24.35′ on July 5th, 2019)

Stop # 3: Rapid Creek near Farmingdale
Fars2 Hg
Rapid Creek near Farmingdale is sitting at 6.07′. Now the record crest was 12.69′. This occurred on May 24, 2010. FACT: 4 out of the last 5 historic crests at this site happened in the 2000s. (Second is 12.6′ on June 18, 2015, followed by May 29. 2019 at 12.52′. Next on the list is June 10th, 1972 at 11.85′, and to round out the top 5, 11.43′ on June 24th, 2018)

STOP # 4: Little Spearfish Creek near Lead
Lsls2 Hg
The data at this site is interesting. The top five historic crests go way back. The highest one was 23.40′ set in 1997. May 2nd to be exact. Then it goes 2000, 1996, 1995, and 2002. Upon looking, there’s nothing recent on the top 10 as well. To see something fairly recent, we drop to # 11 on the list. It was at 5.93 ft on June 1, 2013.

LONG RANGE FLOOD RISK:
Screenshot 2022 05 04 161814
What this is showing is that pretty much everywhere across the NC1 viewing area has a <50% of reaching flood stage.

Key takeaway here: As mentioned last week, and I know I am sounding like a broken record, but we still need the precipitation. We don’t want to get into flooding stage by any means, but at least enough to make the grass green, the soil rich, and the crops grow. We’ll take it.

Enjoy the rest of your Wednesday.

-E.D.

Categories: ConnectCenter1-Weather, Local News, Weather Daily