Historic Flooding Begins to Recede on Northern Lakes
NORTHLAND. — After nearly two months of historic flooding, the water levels are declining on Kabetogama and Rainy Lakes’s. Although, residents are not out of the wake just yet.
Our Northern neighbors have been battling the flood since May. Residents are working daily to keep their homes afloat and they’re also preparing for the months of clean-up efforts to come.
Homeowner on Rainy Lake, Lisa Auran, said that “we’re still navigating lots of water. Our house is still an island, we have water on all sides. We’re pumping daily 24/7 from underneath our house and on this side of the sandbags.”
Lisa and her family use a kayak to get from their home to the end of their driveway. They have also been without sewage service for three weeks.
“I think the biggest thing that keeps me going is the kindness that people have shown.” She went on to say, “I guess in the big picture of life, we’re gonna be just fine, but it’s going to be a long haul to get back what we’ve worked so hard for.”
Over on Lake Kabetogama, Sandy Point Resort is one of the many seasonal businesses affected by the flood. Part-owner Tanner Steinlicht says that they have removed nearly 500 sandbags since the water began to decline. They still have over 75 hundred bags surrounding the resort.
“We’re down nearly 3 1/2 feet but rainy still has a long ways to go.” He continued, “there’s gonna be a lot of help that’s needed because its gonna be a man-power issue, a struggle. Obviously it’s hard enough to find employees as it is, but we need a lot more help than that as far as clean up.”
Sandy Point is open for business and 10 of their 12 cabins will be filled this weekend. The resort is near voyageurs national park, which makes it a popular tourist destination.
Part-owner Brooke Steinlicht said, “I really think they can still get that whole park experience it just may not look like that planned boat tour that they had. They’re able to see some of the main tourist attractions still like the Rock Gardens, they’re loving the visitors centers, and going down to the Ash River. Kettle Falls is also opening this weekend.”
According to the National Weather Service, the lake levels are expected to decrease 15 to 17 inches between now and July 6th.