NWS: Flathead River Hits Flood Stage But Risk of Damage Low

By Beacon Staff

The Flathead River in Columbia Falls hit the 13-foot flood stage on Friday afternoon, but officials with the National Weather Service said the risk of actual flooding in the coming days is low.

The river was expected to hit 14 feet over the weekend but risk of flooding is being mitigated by the fact that Flathead Lake is three feet below full pool, according to the NWS.

“Even though we’re passing the 13-foot mark, the current level of Flathead Lake means we’re not going to have many issues right now,” said meteorologist Corby Dickerson. “There is some wiggle room.”

Dickerson said officials would keep an eye on the river in the coming days. He also said that due to the fast, cold water, people should be careful around the region’s rivers in the coming days.

“Even though we’re not going to have significant flooding, the water is still cold, in the 30s and 40s, so there is a danger of hypothermia,” he said. “The water looks inviting but it can be dangerous.”

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