Hear now, the Mouse roars again

In 1969, the Mouse River flooded the city of Minot, North Dakota. After that, the river was known as The Mouse That Roared. It flooded again several times in the 70’s. It now roars again, only this time it’s a roar of epic proportions. This time around, the Mighty Mouse River is estimated to reach 7 feet higher than the worst flood ever recorded for the Mouse River Basin.

Earlier in June a crest was predicted and it was thought that the river would indeed inundate the city once more. Mandatory evacuations were put in motion and the valley went quiet for several days. Then the water receded and the people were allowed to return to their homes, with the admonishment that they may have to be evacuated again.

Today, the Mighty Mouse River roars louder. As I type this, the water is seeping over the dikes in the North West quadrant of the city. Soon it will reach a sea level measurement of 1,556 and it will pour over the dikes. People have been evacuating again for the last two days…everything they own is being moved out. Many will lose their homes, and there are some who will never return. Several people I know have moved out lock stock and barrel because they have relatives or friends who can store their things. I also know people who can’t take everything with them because they just have nowhere to take it to. These poor people will lose most everything except what they can cram into their vehicles. It’s estimated that around 11,000 people will have had to evacuate. That’s one-fourth of the population of the city. That also doesn’t count the businesses located in the valley that will be lost.

What about Sparrow’s little nest? Well, I’m fortunate in that I have a home that is at an elevation that should keep us out of the way of the river. The thing I’m worried about is that the sewers will be infiltrated by rushing water and then be forced back the way the sewage came from – right into people’s basements. My Dad came over and plugged up my drains for me, complete with wood and sandbags on top, hopefully to keep the pressure from blowing the drain plugs out altogether. I have high hopes that it won’t be a problem but, just in case, I’m making Older Son pack up his room, and we’re bringing all of his stuff upstairs; bed, carpet and all.  I’m also going to spend the afternoon going through what’s left of the boxes left in the basement, and much of it will get donated or pitched today and tomorrow.

Once again, blessings come in ridiculous packaging. Either way things turn out, I’ll have ended up with a cleaned out basement that is ready for remodeling. And, if that’s only as bad as it gets here, I will consider myself truly blessed. So many people here will lose their homes.

Here is a link to the map of my fair city that shows the different original evacuation zones. It also shows, appropriately, in blue how far they expect the water to inundate the valley, which now exceeds the evacuation zone areas. This map in the link is a PDF file and you can zoom in to see specific areas of town a little clearer. Please bear in mind that the water will be one foot higher than this map shows: http://www.minotnd.org/pdf/temp/1562_evacmap.pdf

Here is a still image of this map. It’s a little on the small side, but it gives you a feeling of scale, and how big an area we expect to go underwater. Our mayor said, during a television interview that the valley is going to become a giant lake:

Please send the people in my beautiful city all the good vibes you can…the people here can use every bit of good luck they can get.


About Sparrow
I am a 49 years young and the mother of two amazing young men, who've grown up and left me an Empty-Nester. I write about what's going on in my little corner of the High Plains, or what happens to be crawling across my brain on a given day. Thank you so much for stopping by. Make yourself at home...through the magic of the internet, the coffee's always free and the doughnuts are fresh!

3 Responses to Hear now, the Mouse roars again

  1. TheIdiotSpeaketh says:

    I’ll keep all the people of Minot in my thoughts and prayers.

  2. dragonfae says:

    OMG … it sounded really bad earlier this month but wow. I feel so bad for those who have to deal with such a mess. I can’t even begin to imagine how heartbreaking it must be to wonder if you’re going to lose your home. Sending every bit of dry, hope filled energy I can dig up. *hugs*

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