An update to the spring runoff forecast from the Water Security Agency was released on Friday. The update indicated there is a higher-than-expected runoff being expected in many parts of the province, which should help to fill reservoirs that were very low after last summer.
The Moose Jaw, Swift Current and Old Wives’ basins are all expected to see a higher-than-expected runoff. The runoffs in the Maple Creek, Battle, Frenchman and Lodge Creek basins, which are reported as below normal, are still higher than expected.
The update indicated there are some concerns about ice jamming along the Qu’Appelle, and the situation is being monitored. The ice is making diversions into Last Mountain Lake challenging, and some flow is being passed downstream to prevent flooding upstream of Craven. It is expected all of the lakes in the Qu’Appelle system, with the exception of Last Mountain Lake, should reach desirable levels by the summer.
The South Saskatchewan River is expected to have strong flows this year, with a higher-than-normal alpine snowpack that feeds into the river. This should bring the levels up at Lake Diefenbaker.
The spring melt was also noted in the update as being slow this year, which is reducing the runoff potential. This slower melt has been in part due to below-freezing temperatures at night, and cool daytime temperatures. This has also provided a low risk of flooding.