Hay River water levels near the Hay River gauge increased by about 1.7 metres over the past three days and remain extremely volatile, according to a notice from the GNWT Department of Environment and Natural Resources, May 12.
The department reported that although earlier in the week levels had been steady as ice held in the river channel, this was due to cooler temperatures.
“Ice began to shift yesterday (Wednesday) with an ice jam from upstream moving into the downstream ice jam near town,” the department reported in an advisory.
“This shift in ice caused water levels to increase rapidly through the Town of Hay River and K’atl’odeeche First Nation.”
Snowmelt water upstream on Hay River is seeing an increase into the river system though smaller upstream tributaries to the river in Alberta are starting to decrease, the department stated.
“The water level response on the Hay River and its tributaries to precipitation is very rapid at this time of year due to low basin storage and frozen ground,” the advisory stated.
More information can be obtained by the municipality’s website with current conditions being reported.