Great Sacandaga Lake and Indian Lake Reservoir Reduce Peak Hudson River Flow by 74%

The Great Sacandaga Lake and Indian Lake Reservoir provided 1.93 billion cubic feet of water storage on January 13 preventing the Hudson River from reaching flood stage from the Town of Hadley to Fort Edward.  The State’s two Hudson River regulating reservoirs stored more than 14.37 billion gallons of runoff on Saturday, reducing the peak Hudson River flow by approximately 26,100 cubic feet per second (cfs) Saturday morning.

Last week’s rainfall and runoff from melting snow caused the Hudson River to reach a peak flow of about 9,500 cfs at Hadley and 13,000 cfs at Fort Edward on Saturday morning, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.  The storage capacity of the Great Sacandaga Lake and Indian Lake Reservoir prevented the Hudson River at Fort Edward from reaching flood stage.

Without the combined storage capacity of the State’s Hudson River regulating reservoirs, Hudson River flow would have peaked at more than 35,000 cfs at Corinth and 39,000 at Fort Edward.  The reservoirs prevented the Hudson River from reaching a flood stage of 28.5 feet at Fort Edward, about 0.5 feet below major flood stage, on January 13.  Operation of the Great Sacandaga Lake reduced the height of flood water by more than 4.5 feet, significantly reducing potential flood damage to buildings, roads and bridges in Hadley, Corinth, South Glens Falls, Glens Falls, Hudson Falls, and Fort Edward.

If Great Sacandaga Lake had not been constructed to retain a flood event like that which occurred on Saturday then flooding and inundation of roads in Northumberland, camps in Lake Luzerne, parts of Route 9N and cellars in homes in Corinth, first floors of structures along Old Bend Road in Moreau, and numerous roads and property in the Village of Fort Edward, would have occurred.