With All This Snow, Are Spring Floods Coming?
I laughed when I looked outside yesterday afternoon and saw more snow falling from the sky. Are you kidding me? I don't have any more room to pile this stuff up! The other thought that has crossed my mind while looking at all the giant snow piles is once the weather starts to warm up, are we in trouble? Is this going to be a bad spring for flooding in Eastern Iowa?
Well, it turns out that just because you have a ton of snow, it doesn't mean you're going to have flooding. The Gazette reports that our snow pack right now is anywhere between 8 and 20 inches, well above normal. But that doesn't automatically mean a danger of flooding. In fact, the first prediction of the season by the National Weather Service puts the flood risk this spring along the Cedar and Iowa Rivers low.
Another surprising fact is that has to do with soil conditions. The Gazette reports that experts say that the frost depth is shallow. That may sound shocking given our current streak of sub-zero temperatures. But the mild temps in December and January kept the ground from freezing solid, and then the snow on top acts like a blanket, preventing further frost development.
And while we may be getting slammed with snow here, Northern Iowa and areas of south and central Wisconsin are 5 to 10 inches below normal snowfall this year. And anytime its dry north of you, flooding risks go down!