SPENCER, Iowa | As rains continued Thursday, with more precipitation in the forecast through the weekend, the threat of flooding in parts of Siouxland rose slightly.
The National Weather Service in Sioux Falls, which issued flood warnings for the Big Sioux, Little Sioux and Ocheyedan rivers earlier this week, adjusted upward projected water levels.
The Little Sioux in Milford was estimated at 12.3 feet Thursday morning, already above the 12 feet flood stage. At stages near 12 feet, minor flooding of low-lying agricultural lands begins.
In Spencer, the Little Sioux was estimated to be at 10.8 feet Thursday, past the 10 feet flood stage. The river is expected to crest near 11.9 feet by Friday, flooding the city park and some rural agricultural areas before receding around Monday.
Meanwhile, the Ocheyedan River near Spencer is also bloated due to rainfall, passing its 8-feet flood stage Thursday morning to 8.1 feet, with an expected crest of 8.9 feet by Friday. At 9.5 feet, significant amounts of farm land and pastures begin flooding.
The Little Sioux River at Linn Grove reached 18.5 feet Thursday morning, past the flood stage of 18 feet. The river is estimated to crest near 19.1 feet by Sunday, flooding the city park.
At Cherokee, the Little Sioux was estimated at 17.2 feet Thursday morning, past its 17-feet flood stage. By Friday, the river is expected to crest to 17.9 feet. At levels above 18 feet, the city park will begin to flood on the south bank of the river.
The Big Sioux River in Akron, measured at 13.4 feet Thursday, is expected to rise above the 16 feet flood stage Thursday, and creast at 17.2 feet by Sunday. At 17 feet, nearly 6,500 acres of farmland in Plymouth County would be flooded.
In Hawarden, the Big Sioux on Thursday morning was estimated at 11.4 feet, with a flood stage of 15 feet. By Friday, the waters are expected to crest at 16.1 feet before receding, flooding agricultural land on the South Dakota side of the river.
Friday holds a 40 percent chance of rain in Northwest Iowa, growing to a certainty of rain in the evening and chances of thunderstorms.
More rain is in store Saturday and Sunday, with an 80 percent chance of precipitation coupled with thunderstorms Saturday.