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River Forecast Centre - High Streamflow Advisory Upper Fraser Downgraded issued July 17, 2020

Jul 17, 2020

Northeast Region – Flood Watch – Quesnel River (MAINTAINED) – High Streamflow Advisory – Upper Fraser (DOWNGRADED), Middle Fraser (MAINTAINED), Fraser River mainstem (MAINTAINED)

July 17, 2020

The River Forecast Centre is maintaining a Flood Watch for:

  • Quesnel River (MAINTAINED)

The River Forecast Centre is downgrading to or maintaining a High Streamflow Advisory for:

  • Upper Fraser River including tributaries like the McGregor River, Dore River and McKale River (DOWNGRADED)
  • Fraser River mainstem from Marguerite to Boston Bar (MAINTAINED)
  • Middle Fraser tributaries including areas around Williams Lake and 100 Mile House (MAINTAINED)

A pulse of water from a moderate rainfall event that occurred over the Upper Fraser and Cariboo regions Wednesday to Friday is slowly moving through rivers within the Upper Fraser region. Rainfall totals from Wednesday to Friday morning range from 10 to over 60 mm, the highest occurring at the Hedrick Lake (1A14P) automated snow weather station. Smaller rivers and tributaries within the region peaked late yesterday (July 17th) in response to this event and are now falling. Specifically, the McKale River near 940m Contour (08KA009) peaked near 82 m3/s (near a 5 year flow) late July 16th, and the Morkill River below Hellroaring Creek (08KA013) peaked at 270 m3/s (below a 2-year flow) late July 16th. The McGregor River peaked at 1450 m3/s (close to a 5 year flow) today and is just beginning to fall as of Friday afternoon (July 17th).

The Quesnel River is flowing at 1020 m3/s (10-year flow) and is expected to remain high during the following days due to the current rainfall. Water from rain this week is moving down the Fraser mainstem, driving currently increasing flows at Fraser at Prince George and higher flows forecasted for downstream Fraser sites. Peaks on the mainstem Fraser due to this event are expected to remain below 5-year flows at this time. The Fraser River near Marguerite is flowing at 4420 m3/s (between 1-year and 2-year flow), and is forecast to rise over the weekend. The San Jose River is flowing at 18.2 m3/s (between a 20-year and 50-year flow).  

Dry conditions expected for the weekend should help mitigate high flows; however, unsettled weather forecast for the following week could be problematic within systems that are already high.

Current conditions include:

  • McKale River near 940m Contour (08KA009) is flowing at 52.4 m3/s (1-2 year flow)
  • Morkill River below Hellroaring Creek (08KA013) is flowing at 225 m3/s (1-2 year flow)
  • Dore River near McBride (08KA001) is flowing at 67 m3/s (1-2 year flow)
  • McGregor River at Lower Canyon (08KB003) is flowing at 1440 m3/s (5 year flow)
  • Fraser River at Shelley (08KB001) is flowing at 2990 m3/s (1-2 year flow)
  • Fraser River at South Fort George (08KE018) is at 8.335 m (1-2 year flow)
  • Fraser River at Marguerite (08MC018) is flowing at 4420 m3/s (1-2 year flow)
  • Quesnel River at Quesnel (08KH006) is flowing at 1020 m3/s (10 year flow)
  • San Jose River above Borland Creek (08MC040) is flowing at 18.2 m3/s (20-50 year flow)

The public is advised to stay clear of the fast-flowing rivers and potentially unstable riverbanks during the high-streamflow period.

The River Forecast Centre continues to monitor the conditions and provides updates as conditions warrant.

Sharing on behalf of,

BC River Forecast Centre

Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development

A High Streamflow Advisory means that river levels are rising or expected to rise rapidly, but that no major flooding is expected.  Minor flooding in low-lying areas is possible.

A Flood Watch means that river levels are rising and will approach or may exceed bankfull.  Flooding of areas adjacent to affected rivers may occur.

A Flood Warning means that river levels have exceeded bankfull or will exceed bankfull imminently, and that flooding of areas adjacent to the rivers affected will result. 

Invest North Central
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Robson Valley Region
Regional District of Fraser Fort George
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Village of McBride, BC
Village Office
100 Robson Centre, 855 SW Frontage Rd.
PO Box 519
McBride, B.C., V0J 2E0

Phone: 1-250-569-2229
Fax: 1-250-569-3276

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