UPDATE: Suicide Basin receding, flood warning for Mendenhall Lake and River cancelled

    Despite a glacial outburst flood that inundated Mendenhall Lake with record-setting flood waters, cleanup is occurring and operations are getting back to normal in Forest Service facilities around the lake.

    UPDATE SATURDAY:

    The flood warning for the Mendenhall Lake and River has been cancelled. Water levels have receded rapidly overnight and will continue to do so through the weekend

    As of Saturday morning Suicide Basin was just below the minor flood state of 9.0.

    (Photo: A jökulhlaup, or glacial outburst flood, inundated Mendenhall Lake with record-setting flood waters on July 1.)

    Despite a glacial outburst flood that inundated Mendenhall Lake with record-setting flood waters, cleanup is occurring and operations are getting back to normal in Forest Service facilities around the lake.  

    The Forest Service reopened the Mendenhall Lake campground at noon Saturday. Developed Recreation Manager Marc Ramonda said in a statement that Skaters Cabin Road reopened Saturday morning and people can access the beach boat-launching area and West Glacier Trail again, but the campground took a little longer to clean up.

    Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center Lead Naturalist Laurie Craig said, "This degree of flooding that closed the bridge has only happened once, in 2014, but the water came even higher last night according to the National Weather Service who monitors these floods."  

    Reports show water levels peaked at 11.99 feet on Friday, breaking the 11.85 record set in July 2014.

    For more information on the outburst flood conditions see the Juneau National Weather Service website.

    Find links for real-time information on Suicide Basin and Mendenhall Lake levels in this story below.

    UPDATE FRIDAY:

    Suicide Basin, up in the Mendenhall River drainage, is releasing water into the Mendenhall Lake and River. Residents in the affected area should monitor the situation and be prepared to take appropriate precautions.

    As of Friday morning Suicide Basin stood at 1391 feet which is down 55 feet from Wednesday, while the lake level was 8.84 feet just right below minor flood state of 9.0.

    David Levin, Meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Juneau, provided this update Friday morning, saying water levels should crest Friday night and subside Saturday morning:


    ORIGINAL STORY:

    The City and Borough of Juneau announce that Suicide Basin, up in the Mendenhall River drainage, is beginning to release water into the Mendenhall Lake and River.

    The exact water volume and the timing of the peak of the release is difficult to predict. Residents in the affected area should monitor the situation and be prepared to take appropriate precautions. The National Weather Service will make every effort to provide as much information as possible.

    The City and Borough of Juneau, in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Weather Service, are monitoring the situation.

    Meteorologist David Levin provided this update Thursday morning:

    For real-time information on Suicide Basin and Mendenhall Lake levels with forecasts go to:

    • US Geological Survey Suicide Basin Lake Gauge and Camera

    Mendenhall Lake Gauge/ Forecast

    More from News of the North

    Crude Oil Price

    Current Conditions