A lot of the soaking rains that have hit north Missouri have not been soaking in. They’ve been running off and are likely to cause lingering problems at northeast Missouri’s biggest lake.

The Corps of Engineers is running hundreds of thousands of gallons of water through the Clarence Cannon Dam every second, trying to lower the record-high Mark Twain lake—even as more water runs in from the Salt River and its branches. The state water patrol says the lake is too dangerous for boating for a while—assuming anyone can get a boat in the lake to begin with.

Water Patrol Captain Hans Huenink says the lake’s current as water runs out of it through the dam and a large amount of floating debris washed in by the flooded river make boating too dangerous.

He says it could be several days before the situation improves. He says ramp access areas and some parking lots are flooded. Huenink, who worked at the lake several years ago says its water was never this high, not even during the memorable flood year of 1993.

Huenink says it’s going to take several days, perhaps weeks, for the lake to cleanse itself or for the Corps of Engineers to haul debris out of it. But he hopes to see some progress in three to ten days if there’s no more major rainfall.


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