High water advisory for Yukon's Southern Lakes

The beach on Bennett Lake in Carcross pictured in 2018. (Jane Sponagle/CBC - image credit)
The beach on Bennett Lake in Carcross pictured in 2018. (Jane Sponagle/CBC - image credit)

The Yukon government has issued a high water advisory for the Southern Lakes including Bennett, Tagish and Marsh Lake.

In the Wednesday advisory, it said the water levels are "well above average for this time of year." The levels are above the five-year return period water level, which refers to the expected frequency that a level or flow could be exceeded based on statistical analysis of historic records.

The advisory said the water levels are also continuing to rise from precipitation and glacial inputs, which is typical for this time of year.

There is a "significant precipitation event" affecting the coast mountains in the headwaters of the Southern

The territory anticipates the precipitation totals to be as high as 50 millimetres in some headwater catchments but likely "much lower" in the rest of the Southern Lakes Basin.

There may later be "slightly above seasonal temperatures" and mostly clear weather is forecast through the weekend, it said in the advisory.

Water levels are anticipated to rise between five and 20 centimetres from the current rain, and could exceed the 10-year return period water level.

The advisory said water levels right now are "well below the peaks of 2007 and 2021," and they are not expected to rise to those levels.

People are cautioned to stay clear of the fast-flowing rivers and "potentially unstable riverbanks during the high-
stream flow period."

People living on flood-prone properties are advised to have a plan in place in case of flooding

The territory said it will continue to monitor conditions and will provide updates as conditions change.

Meanwhile, the high water advisory for Lake Laberge has ended, an advisory on Wednesday said. The water levels there peaked July 19 and have now dropped 20 centimetres.