NORTH DAKOTA STATE UNIVERSITY - FARGO, N D

FLOOD STAGES VS. GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS IN THE FARGO-MOORHEAD REGION


When the Red River begins to flood, we hear reports of "stages" or of "flood stages." These values are typically given in feet. But just what does "18 feet," "30 feet," or "40 feet" mean? Here's a useful guide, based on various geographic positions along the Red River in the Fargo-Moorhead region.

Feet

17.0

Water rises to edge of bike path at El Zagal "bowl" along Elm Street, N. between 14th and 15th Avenues Fargo.

18.0

Official flood stage. This depth is based on that at the gaging (= gauging) station east of the Fargo Water Treatment Plant, 13th Ave. S. and 4th St. Minor flooding along Moorhead Golf Course. Elm Street closes at El Zagal "bowl," between 14th and 15th Avenues Fargo.

19.0

Drowning of low-level dam south of Main Ave.

22.0

Red River bridge on North Broadway floods.

24.5

Clearance of toll bridge at 12th Ave. N., Fargo.

25.5

Without diking, the outfield would flood at Jack Williams Stadium, north Fargo.

30.0

12th Ave. N. toll bridge closed. Red River bridge on Cass County 20 closed. Water crosses entrance road to Gooseberry Mounds Park, Moorhead.

34.0

Top of earthen dike at El Zagal golf course, Fargo (the dike has severely sagged below this level since its construction in 1979).

34.4

NP/Center Ave. bridge clearance.

34.93

Flood crest on April 19, 1979.

35.39

Flood crest on April 9, 1989.

36.3

Clearance of the 1st Ave. N. (Fargo) and 2nd Ave. N. bridges.

36.99

Flood crest on March 21, 2010.

37.34

Flood crest on April 15, 1969.

38.2

"100-year flood interval."
Close "Convent Bridge" at 52nd Ave. S. (Fargo).

38.81

Flood crest on April 9, 2011.

39.10

Flood crest on April 7, 1897.

39.72

Flood crest on April 18, 1997.

40.0

Waters are lapping at base of Heritage Hjemkomst Interpretive Center.

40.84

Flood crest on March 28, 2009.

42.50

Inferred level of 1826 flood.

43.5

Water levels hit limit of Island Park dike.

44.0

Design height for Fargo's clay dikes (except those protecting parklands).

45.0

Water levels hit limit of the flood wall of the VA Medical Center (Elm Street N).


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