Update on High Water Conditions: June 23, 2024

The City of Biwabik is continuing to work with the DNR, St Louis County Emergency Management personnel, our neighboring communities, and elected officials to assess the situation created by the immense rainfall on Tuesday June 18.


On Sunday June 23, we used an airplane to inspect a roughly 40-mile path of water beginning near Babbitt and extending south through the Embarrass River, Wynne & Sabin Lakes, Lake Embarrass, Cedar Island Lake, Fourth Lake, Lake Eshquaguma, again through the Embarrass River, and then through the St Louis River where it crosses under the Highway 53 Bridge in Fayal.


The water level is quite high and appears to be moving through slowly due to a massive backup of water through the entire route. The surface of the water is calm nearly everywhere except for the areas where the waterway narrows to pass from lake to lake and in 2 small areas where objects and material have collected in the Embarrass River just north of Lake Embarrass.


These obstructions are impeding the flow of water somewhat but are not holding a tremendous amount of water. The water levels above and below the obstructions are relatively equal. The water is continuing to work its way through and around the obstructions. This action is scouring material from the bank of the river.


We do have a contractor staging to slowly and gradually remove the obstructions beginning in the morning on Monday June 24. Starting at 7:00am on the 24th, material will be carefully removed to reduce the chance of other material being caught by these obstructions and making the problem worse.


We are again strongly urging everyone to stay clear of the washout area and the diversion channel. This area is not safe for the public to access by any means.


Jeff Jacobson

City Administrator