A flood warning begins Tuesday afternoon for the Minnesota River at Mankato, but the flood warning for Sand Creek at Jordan has been canceled.
National Weather Service Hydrologist Craig Schmidt said, “The ice is starting to break up in areas and that’s going to lead to a higher probability of ice jam flooding and we’ve already seen a little bit of that in the last week as well.”
In Mankato, the river was at 20.31 feet early Tuesday morning, and the National Weather Service puts flood stage at 22 feet. They expect the Minnesota River to reach flood stage in the city by Wednesday morning and to be over 24 feet by next Monday.
Temperatures are expected to reach around 50 degrees later this week and Schmidt said that will accelerate snowmelt and, ” We will start to see some of that water moving toward the rivers. They are already starting to run pretty high where the water is flowing. Where it’s still frozen, we’re seeing some water on top of the ice.”
At the Cottonwood River in New Ulm a flood warning has also been declared and, according to the NWS, major flooding is already occurring due to snowmelt and ice jamming. As of Tuesday morning, the river was at 17.51 feet.
“As we get into next weekend and our temperatures go into the 50’s and the lows stay above freezing,” Schmidt explained, “Things will melt even more rapidly and we’ll start to see more rises then. So, we are getting into the main threat here in about a week.”
With that, Schmidt said they are helping communities pull together resources and, “Are working closely with emergency managers all around the state to make sure everybody is getting prepared.”