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Issued 2022.05.05 – Norman Dam Fully Opening, Virtual Public Info Session May 10

Extremely high Rainy River flows into Lake of the Woods are expected to continue with the full opening of the Rainy Lake dam and record flows for this time of year out of the Fork Rivers in Minnesota. Lake of the Woods is expected to continue to rise beyond the top of the legislated operating range, 323.47 m (1061.25 ft). Wet weather could result in the levels of Lake of the Woods and of the Winnipeg River continuing to rise quickly in May.

Norman Dam to be Fully Opened May 7

The current level of Lake of the Woods is 323.16 m (1060.2 ft), over 95th percentile for the first week of May. The average lake level rose by 31 cm (12 in) over the past week and is expected to rise by 25-32 cm (10-13 inches) over the next week.

Outflow from Lake of the Woods is scheduled to be increased to 1125 m³/s on May 5 (see details below). The LWCB has directed the full opening of the Norman Dam on Saturday, May 7, which is expected to increase outflow to 1250 m³/s. This additional flow is expected to raise the level of the Winnipeg River as follows:

Below Norman Dam: 35 cm (14 in)
Above Kimberley Rapids: 30 cm (12 in)
Winnipeg River Marina: 31 cm (12 in)
Near Locke Bay: 30 cm (12 in)
Above Myrtle Rapids: 30 cm (12 in)
Above the Dalles: 30 cm (12 in)
Above Throat Rapids: 30 cm (12 in)
Minaki: 22 cm (9 in)

Lake of the Woods and the Winnipeg River will continue to rise until inflow is in balance with the outflow. Levels will not decline until outflow is greater than the inflow.

Lac Seul and English River Flows Rising Quickly

Flows in the English River and Lac Seul are expected to rise quickly over the next week with rapid melting of the heavy snowpack. Tributaries will likely see very rapid rise in level and flows.

The current level of Lac Seul is 355.06 m (1164.9 ft), a 55th percentile level for this time of year. The lake level rose by 14 cm (6 in) over the past week, and is expected to rise by 20-30 cm (8-12 in) over the next week. Lac Seul authorized outflow is scheduled to be increased from 330 m³/s to 400 m³/s on Friday, May 6.

Virtual Public Information Session May 10

The Lake of the Woods Control Board will host a virtual Public Information Webinar from 7:00-8:00 p.m. CT on Tuesday May 10. The Webinar will cover the latest conditions and forecasts and participants will be able to submit questions to the Board. Please email for access details.