Mississippi backwater to see more flooding

Several Mississippi lakes and the Mississippi River will be cresting again soon. The National Weather Service has predicted that the Mississippi River will crest near 50 feet on the Vicksburg gage by May 20th. In addition, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Vicksburg District have already notified local authorities and emergency management personnel that flows from Grenada Lake, located near Interstate 55 in north Mississippi, is forecasted to enter the project’s spillway within the week. They also said conditions in the Yazoo Backwater areas will likely have some implications on Eagle Lake.

Grenada Lake is one of four flood control reservoirs in Mississippi maintained and operated by the Vicksburg District. The district’s four flood control reservoirs in Mississippi – Arkabutla, Enid, Grenada and Sardis lakes – are used to hold runoff, or excess rainwater, as a flood-prevention measure.

Rainfall over the northern portion of the state of Mississippi impacted the elevations at the reservoirs.

The Vicksburg gage on the Mississippi River is currently at 48.6 feet. National Weather Service forecasts indicate that the Mississippi River will crest near 50 feet on the Vicksburg gage by May 20. The current elevation in the Yazoo Backwater area, on the landside of the Steele Bayou Control Structure, is at 96.8 feet, while the elevation on the river side of the structure is 96.5 feet.

The Vicksburg District is taking precautionary measures in the vicinity of Muddy Bayou Control Structure to ensure the integrity of the structure is maintained should backwater enter the lake in that area. The Muddy Bayou Control Structure is the drainage structure that regulates water flowing into or out of Eagle Lake through Muddy Bayou, which is a tributary of Steele Bayou.

In the Grenada Lake area, high water has also meant limited availability for some recreation opportunities at the lakes. Some boat ramps, as well as a few low-lying picnic areas and campsites, have been closed due to high water. Additionally, all beaches at the four lakes are closed due to high water and are likely to remain closed through the Memorial Day weekend.