US Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District

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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District
Public Affairs Office
180 5th St. E., Suite 700
St. Paul, MN 55101
Phone: (651) 290-5807
Fax: (651) 290-5752
cemvp-pa@usace.army.mil 
Aerial image of Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam

Corps annual Snow surveys provide flood forecast data ahead of spring thaw

Published Feb. 27, 2019

ST. PAUL, Minn. – A team with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, will continue collecting snow surveys throughout the region March 4-14. 

The team is taking the surveys to assist Corps’ water management officials in determining how much water is contained within the snowpack this year. This information is shared with other agencies such as the National Weather Service and the U.S. Geological Survey and helps determine what steps can be taken to reduce flood threats across the region.

The team will begin in Forest Lake, Minnesota, and make a counterclockwise trip around the region. This area includes most of Minnesota and western Wisconsin. Additionally, Corps of Engineers park rangers will be taking snow surveys in the Mississippi River Headwaters region. Surveys in North Dakota have already been completed.

The snow survey process involves going to a predetermined location, collecting snow through a tube and weighing the melted snow to determine water content.