As Lake Manitoba residents once again batten down the hatches and build sandbag dikes to protect properties from vicious waves and high water, those around Lake Winnipeg are now facing the same threats.

High water

Many shorelines and beaches are under water along Lake Winnipeg. There used to be at least 20 feet of beach before the water's edge here at Black's Point beach in Grindstone Provincial Park. (Melanie Verhaeghe/CBC)

Many shorelines and beaches have been swallowed by the swollen lake levels.

Where there was once nearly seven metres of sand before the water's edge, there is now a sliver of beach, if any at all.

At Black's Point beach in Grindstone Provincial Park, the water is surrounding the benches on the beach, and the bridge to get to the beach is floating away.

Winnipeg Beach is also taking a pounding and waves more than a metre high are washing over bulkheads.

Lake warning

Environment Canada has issued a strong wind warning for all of Lake Winnipeg. (Environment Canada)

Tony Pimentel, the mayor of Winnipeg Beach, said several properties at either end of the community are sandbagged, but they may need shoring up as a wind warning has been issued by Environment Canada for all of Lake Winnipeg.

Winnipeg Beach resident Ann Hoogstraten is worried if the wind continues, the dike will gave way.

“I’m so concerned that I left my house last night, and it’s the second time in two weeks that I’ve left my house and not stayed here,” said Hoogstraten. “It’s just the beginning, and it’s really bad right now.”

Six generations of Hoogstraten’s family have lived in the area, but she said if the province doesn’t come up with a permanent solution to strengthen the dikes, she will move.

Winnipeg Beach's famous boardwalk is also in trouble.

"The boardwalk is going to be closed down probably for this weekend because of the wave action washing away the sand underneath the boardwalk," Pimentel said.

And it just so happens this weekend is the community's annual Boardwalk Days festival, lamented Pimentel, who said this is shaping up to be a terrible summer.

"And our piers, they're closed off. The water levels are so high in fact, down some of the streets they can't be used at all because water levels are right up to the, almost to the roads," he said.

Nearby, on Willow Island, Roy Robertson is watching waves creep closer and closer to his cottage.

The only road to the community is at risk of being washed out, and Robertson said he’s been told the lake could rise by another half metre or more.

“It’s the hardest thing trying to control it, which you can’t,” said Robertson. “You don’t want to hear it and see it crashing in and destroying your property.”