Hot days speed up snow melt

The Elk River. - Submitted photo
The Elk River.
— image credit: Submitted photo

By Sally MacDonald

Cranbrook Townsman


Warm temperatures are speeding up snow melt in the East Kootenay, and now the River Forecast Centre has issued a High Streamflow Advisory for the region.

On Thursday, May 9, the B.C. River Forecast Centre said it is watching rivers throughout the Kootenay region for minor flooding in low-lying areas this weekend.

Although the Elk River was not mentioned specifically in the advisory, other Kootenay watersheds including the Salmo, and Moyie, were.

A High Streamflow Advisory means that river levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but that no major flooding is expected.

"Several days of high temperatures have led to rapid melt of this season's snow pack," reads the alert from the River Forecast Centre. "River levels have been rising quickly in response to this melt. Current river levels are below levels of concern, however the weather forecast from Environment Canada is for steady increases in temperatures in the South Interior through Friday.

"River levels are expected to continue to increase through the remainder of the week, reaching the highest levels late on Friday or into Saturday."

Temperatures in Fernie are forecasted to reach 26 degrees on Saturday and Sunday, before a rainy change on Monday or Tuesday.

The average historical temperature for this time in May is 19 degrees.

"The River Forecast Centre will continue to monitor conditions and will provide updates as conditions warrant," said the alert.

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