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Local reservoirs shallow but OK

Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 1:28 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - Reservoirs across the state may look empty but Peter Hansen with the Wisconsin Valley Improvement Company says there is nothing to worry about.

Each year WVIC, along with other damming companies, draws down the water from reservoirs to prevent flooding in the spring. The lower water levels allow for snowmelt, excess rain, and flowing water from upstream to fill reservoirs without problems.

Hansen said the recent warm weather melted the snow and the ice earlier than usual, exposing what is usually hidden underneath this time of year.

“The drawdowns are normal. What’s not normal is the ice is gone this early. And now everybody can see what it looks like when we’re down this far,” Hansen said.

Wisconsin saw little snow this winter. The lack of snowmelt has reservoirs shallower than usual. At this time, the Big Eau Pleine reservoir is 7.74 feet below its maximum. Hansen said he is not nervous about them filling up. He said a little rain should help get the Big Eau Pleine reservoir back to normal in the coming weeks. He also expects Lake DuBay to be full again by mid-April. That water will naturally come from the Wisconsin River.

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