It was nearly 1 year ago that we were monitoring very closely the water level on Lake Champlain. On April 13, 2011, the lake level topped 100' above sea level (which is considered flood stage). The lake then continued to drain excess snow melt and after several bouts of heavy rainfall, the lake surged to record high levels over 103' above sea level. The damage was extensive and the flooding was a site to see in 2011 along Lake Champlain.
The bikepath area along the water front of Burlington, April 2011
Water from Lake Champlain slowly crept its way towards homes, businesses, and roadways as it flooded over in Spring 2011.
So here's the good news. The lake is no where near flood level at this point. In fact, the probability of exceeding flood stage is very low. We would have to see some seriously heavy rain for a very long time (I'm talking biblical rainfall) for the Lake to flood again this year.
A weak year of snowfall around our region is once contributing factor. Just to gander at the numbers from Burlington alone, we have less than half of average snowfall, and near 3.5x less than we had last year. Remember, that snow melted into the Lake eventually.
The snow depth region wide is negligible. In fact, there's nearly no snow on the ground for most areas aside from the mountain tops. This time last year, there was still several feet of snow left, not just at the mountain tops, but across most of the region outside the major valleys. All that snow had to melt in to Lake Champlain.
Finally, rainfall this year has also been well below average. Precip for the year is about 2/3 of normal. The abnormally dry conditions is also helping keep Lake Champlain at bay this year.
Here is a graphic which we will continue to monitor here at Fox44 and ABC22 News. It will be quite a different springtime season this year along the shores.