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Lake Levels Update - March 5, 2024

The above chart shows water levels to March 5th. MNRF are not actively raising the water on Kawagama Lake (no recent dam operations) however, the freshet is starting earlier than normal this year with the current warm weather  So water levels are rising due to increased runoff to the lake.  Given the lower-than-normal snowpack and the current weather forecast, MNRF are allowing the lake to begin to rise at a controlled rate to hold some of the water.  They will continue to monitor the water level, snow, and weather to determine if they need to release more, or less, water from the dam as needed.

Above is the 2023 Kawagama Lake water level chart. MNRF control our lake level through operation of the Kawagama dam. From Jan 1 until May 1 “Target operating Levels” are followed. Then the “Best Management Practice” (BMP) targets are followed until Oct 15 at which time the “Target Operating Levels” are once again used. The BMP was established about 20 years ago to ensure the lake had sufficient water through the summer months.

You’ll note that levels were above targets From May through August. These high water events were caused by several single large events (50+mm) and a few smaller events (20+mm) over a short period of time. After lake water levels increased, they were then lowered in a controlled manner over several days.  When the weather cooperated, the water levels were near target levels. 

Lake Levels Committee

March 6, 2024


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