Skilak glacier dam release triggers flood advisory

Zaz Hollander

The National Weather Service has issued a flood advisory for a glacial outburst at Skilak Lake that could cause minor flooding in places along the Kenai River until noon Saturday.

Water is releasing from a lake that's built up behind Skilak Glacier, orecasters said in a statement issued Thursday morning. That's caused river levels to rise at Skilak Lake's for the last three days.

Riverfront residents, especially people in the Kenai Keys and Big Eddy areas, should be aware that the Kenai is expected to rise again during the next few days, the advisory states.

Based on estimates of the volume of the lake behind the glacier dam, peak river levels at the Kenai Keys are expected to crest above minor flood state at 11.3 feet Friday evening. Minor flood stage is 11 feet; the river was measured at 10.7 feet Thursday morning.

The Kenai at Soldotna isn't expected to flood and will crest Saturday morning, the weather service said. Forecasters aren't sure exactly how fast the water behind the glacier dam will drain.

Reach Zaz Hollander at or 257-4317.