2014 Fraser River Freshet Information

Link to Provincial Forecasts:  http://bcrfc.env.gov.bc.ca/bulletins/freshet.htm

Provincial River Outlook Issued:

June 11, 2014

Fraser River levels  reached just over 5.5m at the Mission gauge in the later part of May and have been droping since, to a current level below 4.5m.  As of June 10, 2014, water level forecasts will no longer be posted on the River Forecast website, unless levels return to around 5.5 m at the Fraser River at Mission gauge.

(Environment Canada) Overall, spring 2014 was slightly cooler and wetter than normal. Precipitation and near average temperatures through April provided late winter snowpack accumulation in the north. A delay in the onset of melt season occurred until early May. The warmer and wetter weather has led to rapid snow melt, and caused most rivers in the province to have above average flow in May. Flows in central interior reached up to 1-in-5 year to 1-in-20 year return period conditions. Despite the higher than normal snowpacks in the north, warming throughout the period was gradual, therefore was producing an incremental melt which minimized flooding.

May 30, 2014

Through most of the province, river levels are expected to continue to recede through the weekend. Flows on the Fraser River at Hope are expected to drop to around 8000 m3/s by early next week. The Fraser River at Mission has also dropped, and is currently at a gauge height of 5.46 m.

The warming trend through next week will cause increased snow melt rates for the remaining snow pack, and may result in increased river levels towards the middle of next week.

May 15, 2014:

With warmer weather in early-May, the seasonal melt of the snow pack is under way. The Province has reported that many of the larger river systems, including the Fraser River and Thompson River, are flowing at well above normal levels for this time of year, and in many cases are approaching mean annual flow level. On the Fraser River, an estimated 26% of the freshet runoff (forecasted April-September volume) has passed through Shelley, and 22% through Hope. Typically, the peak of the runoff season occurs when 35-45% of the freshet volume has passed. On the Fraser River, on-going flood risk from snow melt is expected to last another 3 weeks.

May 6, 2014:

Fraser River Freshet Outlook was presented to Council. Overall snowpack for the Fraser River basin is 99% of normal as of April 1st; approximately the same as last year's snowpack, which was also about 100% of normal.  Expected peak this year (assuming relatively normal spring runoff conditions) is 8,600 cubic metres per second at Hope. This would result in water levels in the order of 5.5m at the Mission Gauge.

The peak will depend on the weather during May and June and higher than average flows will occur if there is delayed snowmelt followed by a sudden hot spell or if widespread heavy rainfall coincides with peak snowmelt.

Attachments
Description Date File Size
Council Update 2014 Freshet 2014-05-23 1.41MB