March 19th, 2014 at 5:59 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

advisory   A Flood Watch has been issued for the Grand River in Kent and Ottawa Counties.  An ice jam is reported upstream from Ada.  Ice is starting to move in places, Comstock Park/Belmont is one of those places.  There are a number of Flood Advisories in effect.    If you live along the river or see moving ice, leave a comment and let us know.  Check out the current gauge readings on the Grand River at JacksonEaton RapidsLansingEaglePortland, Ionia, Ada, Grand Rapids and Eastmanville.   Here’s gauge readings on the Thornapple River at Hastings and Caledonia…the Rogue River at Rockford,  the Maple River at Maple Rapids, the Flat River at SmyrnaBattle Creek at Battle Creek, the Kalamazoo River at New Richmond, Comstock and Marshall, the St. Joseph River and Three Rivers.

From Ron Heeren near the Jupiter Bridge:  “There is just minor flooding at this point.  The River briefly cleared a channel at around 6:15 but it closed up when I came back from the Store.  Water is clear at Northland Bridge, and the folks on Konkle are parking their cars above the potential flood mark.  Lower Island is about 6 inches over flood stage which is about one foot up from yesterday.  The Channel should be deep enough to allow good flow unless we get some bigger chunks of ice.”

60 Responses to “FLOOD WATCH – KENT/OTTAWA”

  1. TomKap (Michigan St. & Fuller) Grand Rapids says:

    WOW! I’M SNOWED IN!!! Look at all that COLD AND SNOW!!! :)

    1. Bill says:

      Who knew, hopefully u have lots of sprites

    2. Ned S. (East of Holland) says:

      What do you do, sit around and wait for a new thread to start so that you can post some inane, repetitive parrot-like statement? Get a life.

      1. Rocky (Rockford) says:

        + 100 trillion, bazillion, gazillion! Keep up the good work!

      2. TomKap (Michigan St. & Fuller) Grand Rapids says:

        Get a clue NED. I post maybe once a day. Why does that bother you?
        You must be insane to think I sit around in this blog all day like everyone else. It’s just luck then when I check, Bill has started a new thread.

        If you want to joing the CLOWN CLUB, move in with Rocky!
        Otherwise, get lost! :)

        1. yooper4021 says:

          A little defensive, aren’t you???

        2. Mark (East Lansing) says:

          Ned’s comment could easily be applied to others here.

        3. yooper4021 says:

          That’s true. And they continue to squawk back and forth, back and forth, back and forth.

  2. Rocky (Rockford) says:

    The temps look AWESOME for next week! It looks like I will able to ski and snowmobile at least another two weeks! Imagine! Who knew? Not the warm weather junkies! We could use another SNOWSTORM right about now! Bring it baby!



  3. Rocky (Rockford) says:

    COLD and SNOW Rocks! We need a SNOWSTORM!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. Barry in Zeeland says:

      How can it be? We are running below average for snowfall for the month of March. Who knew? Not you.

      1. Rocky (Rockford) says:

        You are one delusional person! Who knew?

        1. Barry in Zeeland says:

          Truth and facts hurts don’t it.

        2. SW Kent says:

          Rocky, you will be snowmobiling for another month.
          Who knew?

        3. Barry in Zeeland says:

          Oh yes, I forgot a link to the facts:


          You can clearly see we are running below average for the month.

        4. Tim from Zeeland says:

          Not much snow for March. That’s okay Rocky. Once the snow piled up in the parking lots has melted you will not be seen again for six or seven months. God, can only hope!

        5. yooper4021 says:

          And you guys are how old???

        6. Bill says:

          I ride the bus home from school everyday with rocky

        7. fixxxer says:

          Rj rides the shortbus. He is crying to his mommy that the snow is melting.

    2. Cali1005 says:

      And yet we have only gotten about 5 inches of snow this month despite being well below normal.

    3. Cali1005 says:

      Also weren’t you the one who said Winter would go out as a bang. Well here we are just 15 hours away from the official first day of spring and instead of getting a big snowstorm we got some snowmelt with rain and temps in the 40s. At this point it’s just a waiting game of when warmer temps will finally arrive.

  4. Paul m says:

    The snow that fell a couple hours ago was your snowstorm!

  5. on the Grand says:

    I cannot believe how much the river has melted since the weekend run. Just got back and it is open water past the Holiday Inn. The Us31 bridge is open and flowing and past the train bridge. The harbor boat launch is open in the deep water area but the shoreline is still iced. The Grand Haven channel is open with just a few large icebergs floating. It is open past the lighthouse. The beach area has lot and lots of what I call frozen floating wave as far as the eye can see but that really does not matter because the channel is clear. Now by my place we are still slushy ice with big cracks in the ice but it is still holding together. We just tied the floating dock to a tree and dropped 2 anchors on the ice. Last ice jam and flood we lost the dock. The ice just took it away. Funny story, I found it a mile up river on someones marsh, so I knocked on the door and asked if we could get it in the springtime and yes we got it back in March, paddled it home. The ice is 8 to 12 inches thick at my place so when that goes it is going to do a lot of damage. The water level has just moved a few inches up the seawall but it has also move about 4ft inland. So now we will just have to wait and see what happens at the bridge. The river is not roaring like it was last spring, not yet, still a slow melt.

    1. Wswplz says:

      Can you compare this year to others you have experienced, or is this one unique all in its own?

    2. GunLakeDeb says:

      LOL!! Your dock was upstream??? Obviously, somebody took a shine to it. Wouldn’t hurt to put your name and phone one something that can go AWOL like that? Crossing my fingers that the colder temps coming slow down the melt – I’m stunned at how fast the Thornapple came up even before the rain…

    1. Rocky (Rockford) says:

      Here is the temp profile for this MONSTER storm! All SNOW and a TON of it! Bring it on!


      1. Wswplz says:

        If one were a mad weather scientist it would be temp profiles almost as you have posted that would be close to ideal for a monster snow storm coupled with that run of the GFS 24 hr precip. Both the northern and southern stream meeting for what would be epic, however unlikely this scenario would be to play out , they do however marry up to each other well. If you had the power to wish this one to life, these would be the ingredients to use.

      2. Cali1005 says:

        Says the boy who said we would get a monster snowstorm on the last day of winter lol

  6. on the Grand says:

    We have never had a real issue with flooding in the ten years that we been here. I have a 7 ft seawall in front of the house and the house is set back about 300 ft from the river just a foot from the 100 year flood marker. Usually the water drops in the fall and regains it level in the spring time. Three times it has come up to the top of the wall and twice over the wall a few feet in. Last year it was 6 inches from the top. But a few years ago we had a ice jam at the bridge around christmas and the water came up to the house and past the 100 year mark we had sand bagged the outside wall the inside wall. It takes a lot of bags. The neighbors were great. Came and helped. They are further back and up on a slope. We jet out in the river. Then we got the chairs out on the deck and prepared for the boat to sink. There is nothing you can do. They dynamited at the drawbridge and just like that the water went down like a bathtub draining. It was amazing. We were so lucky. So now I am a little paranoid, when it come to water levels. Each year it is so very different but I have never seen the river total freeze like it has and ice as thick as it is. Not sure what will happen. I think as long as it is not roaring and the ice can flow freely it will be ok. The lowing areas I think this year will fill up with overflow water.

    1. Wswplz says:

      It must be a different feeling all together living in your location , as I’m sure it must be a blessing most of the time. The flip side of that coin is as you mentioned it only takes one event that leaves an image in your head although usually dormant but in times like these when the threat is slightly elevated I’m sure it doesn’t take long for you to recall that memory. Thanks for sharing your experiences as I enjoyed reading your recollections off the past and what’s currently going on. I hope we keep seeing this slow thaw and you have an uneventful spring to come. :)

    2. Sandy(Hudsonville) says:

      I too enjoy reading your posts. I have learned a lot about the river. I hope you keep posting your experiences on the river.

  7. on the Grand says:

    Not sure about Spring Lake itself. Last weekend it was still frozen with a few fishing huts on it. I guess it is open now. We did not drive around it tonight. Where we are the water will spread out first in the marshes and bayous and over the islands. I will say last year, it was amazing to see all the wood, tree trunks and garbage and picnic tables come down the river.

  8. on the Grand says:

    It is a wonderful place. The wildlife is unbelievable, lots of deer, turkeys, sand cranes,swans all sorts of game birds and eagles,hawks and a 2 years back snow owls. We have otters and muskrats and a variety of turtles and horrible water snakes. The fishing is great and the bass are always jumping. We also have all the other local wildlife but we do have a few nasty coyotes.There is all sorts of water crafts boating about and there is never a dull moment on the river. We have rescue a man floating down the river on a piece of plywood. We have had the Remax hotair balloon land in front of us and skydivers jump out of planes. Best of all we can put the deck chairs out and watch the fireworks from Grand Haven to Muskegon during the summer months. The sunsets on the Grand are beautiful. I can go on and on as you can see, I love it here.

    1. Wswplz says:

      That sounds like many things I enjoy to do and watch, and you mentioned good fishing as well, that’s one thing I haven’t done since moving here two years ago as I hope to this year. I used to go fishing all the time when I lived in San Diego both fresh water and lots of salt water fishing to in the waters of Mexico where the big fellas( tuna, marlin, dorado etc) enjoy the warm waters especially in the months of June July and August . I really want to get out on my boat this year and test the waters of Michigan . This might be a ridicules question , but do many people venture on the river via the lake or vs versa for that matter by power boat or are the waters to dangerous. Or is there a place closer to say the lake where they connect and one could safely do that.

  9. Mark (East Lansing) says:

    Check out the link to the Grand River in Lansing. It dropped a foot and a half yesterday in no time at all. Like someone pulled the drain plug.

  10. Ryan (Rockford) says:

    Light snow, almost in pellet form, has been falling for a little while now. My deck and driveway have some areas with a very light dusting. Winter, albeit not nearly as brutal, continues in West Michigan on the eve of spring.

  11. Wswplz says:

    Interesting to watch that cool air move in behind this departing low by radar as you have the lake providing a bit of lift or enhancement if you will. Interesting to watch as it looks different then just a normal les of course.

    1. Wswplz says:

      Just came across an interesting fact while doing some reading on orography and how it can dramitcally increase LES on the lee side of the lake. ( I,e Tug Hill plateau ). They say it can increase LES in the amount of almost 8-12″ per 100 ft of elevation, that’s pretty impressive.

  12. yooper4021 says:

    Doesn’t sounds like the Grand Rapids NWS is as optimistic as some about the warm up later nex week. And on to April we go…


    1. Ryan (Rockford) says:

      Sounds good. If it’s going to warm up, I want it to really warm up…like 60 degrees and better. To me, the worst weather is 40-50 degrees, especially when it’s accompanied by rain. If it’s going to be cold, let it be 30-ish with snow.

      1. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

        Right on! If I wanted 40 to 50, I’d live in Seattle! :) I think this year we will sort of jump quickly into the 60s when Spring does arrive. Not sure how much higher the temps will get on average over the summer though…

        1. If I want the cold weather, I will move to the Yukon and Northwest Territories. The cold temperatures can stay away haha but it is what it is

        2. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

          Haha. You mean the constant cold of this winter, correct? :P

    2. Robert (Plainwell) says:

      It seems that for the pattern to change, the warm pool of water off the Washington and Oregon coast has to move or disappear.


  13. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

    Nice band of snow currently over us. The ground and roads are getting covered again.

  14. Larry of Hastings, barry co says:

    I live just north of the Thornapple River, on high ground. I am sure some people will have issues, in lowline areas.

  15. Cali1005 says:

    4 inches of snow is the least amount of snow we have had since December 10. Wow talk about a brutal winter lol

    1. Matt (Spring Lake) says:

      Yep. I keep thinking about how “I’m down to” a foot of snow in my front yard. In a normal winter, I would think of that as a lot if snow in the yard. :)

  16. mr. negative says:


  17. John (Norton Shores) says:

    1/2″ of new snow here, winter just won’t leave us alone lol!

  18. Sandy(Hudsonville) says:

    snowing here.

  19. INDY says:

    no more brown grass its snowing again!!! INDYY!!

    1. Cali1005 says:

      Upper 30s tomorrow with some sun. So all the snow we get will just melt :)

  20. Larry of Hastings, barry co says:

    Happy first day of Spring everyone. I know it’s snowing, but winter is over.

  21. Wswplz says:

    I took a peak at the river down near the ball park and turned on Jupiter St, drove down to where the street met up with the water. I can say that the water was starting to come over the road I was on as there was a good sized ice jam up against the overpass. It looked like some water was free to move through but not much and it had risen to about 6-8ft from the bottom of the bridge in some areas. It was already starting to move into people’s yards , if it keeps rising that road I was on which leads to some of the houses will be over taken soon, similar to last year although that area was only access able by boat at that stage. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. Btw it has been snowing more than I thought it would be, still coming down at this time.

  22. Vincent(N.E.Kent CO) says:

    The huge ice jam in Ada was on the south side of M21 yesterday. Stacked high with trees and logs mixed in. North side of bridge was open water.

  23. fixxxer says:

    I just wanna know when the temps will average out. Screw this cold weather for 6 months on end.

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