The latest (and last) forecast for the 2011 Flood was released on March 25. The situation is still grim overall, but for us the situation has improved slightly. The municipality is currently recommending that temporary dikes be built to the 1976 (record year) level without the +2' for free board. Since our house and the land around it is 1976 + 1' we don't need to sandbag. That's a huge relief. I don't want anything cutting into my reading/blogging/crafting/gambling time. Providing the forecast is right (they are usually pretty good at predicting these things) and we don't get an ice jam, we should be relatively ok-ish.
Some of our neighbours will not be as lucky. There are a few thousand sandbags at the end of our street. Some of these have already been delivered to the individual yards. I'm not sure how many houses are sandbagging, but it's at least a few. It's pretty disconcerting to see them all. My anxiety level is definitely up.
There's still a good chance that some of our property is going to be underwater. Just how much remains to be seen. There's still a 1 in 10 chance that it'll get closer than it did in 2009. At that time, the river was within 50 feet of the house. We still had about 6-8 feet of elevation because the land around our house was raised for flood proofing.
We finally got to see an aerial photo of our area from 1976. There's really not that much to see. Our street didn't exist then and there were just a few houses around. It's hard to tell where the water was because the area was heavily forested. Judging by the survey levels and other information we've received, we are now guessing that at least the bottom of the trees were submerged. I also found some photos online of our area (from ground level) in 1976. They were not pretty. Roads were underwater and in some areas there was just water as far as the eye could see.
As for current conditions, I was going to post more pictures of the yard, but not much has changed. Some of the snow has melted in the nearby city; even the farmers' fields are looking more spring-like. However, our property with its many trees still looks like winter even though we've had some melting. There are areas where we can see the ground, especially around the house where my husband removed the snow (in case we had to sandbag - can't sandbag on snow or ice), but the other 2.75 acres is still pretty much covered.
The weather is definitely warming up now so we should see more of the ground soon enough. I'll post some photos of the yard (or water as the case maybe) when there's been a change.
A big Thank You to those who outright volunteered or said yes when asked to help us with sandbagging, moving furniture and everything else. Please stand down...for now. ;)
Disclaimer: If you came here for information about the Manitoba Flood 2011, you've probably come to the wrong place. This post (or series of posts) will focus only on my backyard and house. If you are looking for general information regarding the flood, try the Government of Manitoba website, which can be found here or here for more area specific information regarding the Cartier, St. Francois Xavier and Headingley areas. You can also get more information by calling your local municipality office.