Floodwaters damaged and scoured numerous small creeks and streams across northeast and eastern Nebraska, including this branch of West Bow Creek, which was flooding into surrounding fields and brushing up against bridges on Wednesday, March 13. This branch of the West Bow swamped some farmsteads downstream as it emptied into the larger main branch of Bow Creek, which empties into the Missouri River near Wynot, Neb.
Nearly a week after flooding began, water still stood in fields nearly a quarter-mile west from Bazile Creek at the Knox County seat, Center, Neb. During the height of the flooding, much of the fields within the basin of Bazile Creek were flooded. The Bazile rushes toward Niobrara, Neb., where it covered Highway 12 near a location called Maiden's Leap before emptying into the Missouri River.
Now back inside its banks, the Bazile Creek flowing just west of the Knox County Courthouse near Center, Neb., rushed beneath a bridge and flooded low-lying areas near the courthouse during the height of the flooding last week. Debris can be seen hanging in trees and shrubs within the creek basin.
Gavins Point Dam north of Crofton, Neb., shown here Friday, March 15, when the dam was releasing 100,000 cubic feet per second of water for a short period, is the last of the flood control dams along the Missouri River. Because of the breach of the Spencer Dam on the Niobrara River, a surge of water emptied into the Missouri River and Lewis and Clark Lake from the Niobrara last week. At that time, the lake reached a record level, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers stopped water discharge from Fort Randall Dam upstream and allowed high releases from Gavins Point to release the unregulated water flows coming in from the flooded Niobrara basin and other flooded basins upstream from the dam. As of Wednesday, March 20, releases from Gavins Point have been decreased to 28,000 cubic feet per and may be decreased more to help alleviate flooding downstream on the Missouri River.
A flooded field near Tekamah in Burt County, Neb. For growers close to the Missouri River, flooding has become a regular occurrence over the past 10 years.
ROAD ENDS IN WATER
Although not in Nebraska, this photo taken of the East Nishnabotna River in southwest Iowa shows the extent of the flooding across the Midwest.
ROAD TO RECOVERY
With saturated fields and county roads in need of repair, one of the big issues growers face moving forward is planting — for some, even accessing fields may be a challenge.
This photo, taken in Dodge County, Neb., shows the extent of the damage to county infrastructure — some bridges and roads have been completely washed out, and it will take some time before they're repaired.
This county road in Dodge County, like a number of other county roads in flooded areas of eastern Nebraska, has been rendered impassable from heavy flooding.