Parts of the southern Red River Valley could face major spring flooding.
The National Weather Service in Grand Forks, N.D., released its flood forecast Thursday and predicted a good chance of major flooding in Fargo and moderate flooding in Pembina.
National Weather Service forecaster Greg Gust said a high snow pack around Fargo could translate into quickly rising waters in the spring.
Fargo was devastated by flood waters in 2011, but Gust said it's mainly bridges and roads that will be threatened, not necessarily homes.
Grand Forks itself is only at a minor risk of flooding, according to the forecast. It said the snow pack in the area ranged from normal to above normal, but topsoil was wet and frozen because of heavy rainfall.
The wet topsoil could cause a problem if it thaws faster than normal.
Area near border at risk of moderate flooding
Gust said though there is less snow around Grand Forks, the flood risk goes up again closer to the Canadian border.
Pembina, just south of the Canadian border, could see moderate flooding.
"There's, again, a much greater snow pack — still not as much as you have in southern Manitoba, but that pushes that area into the moderate realm," said Gust.
Just north of the border, Mayor Wayne Arseny of Emerson, Man., said the town is prepared as long as the flooding doesn't happen too quickly.
"We’re used to high water. It just depends how much and how fast," said Arseny.
He’s worried a spring blizzard could make matters worse.
"People like roads open and the last thing they want to see is roads washed out and roads underwater," he said.
Gust said Manitoba could also see high water levels because the topsoil is frozen solid.
Manitoba’s flood forecast is expected to be released next Wednesday.