The NOAA forecast calls for high winds in Seattle Saturday afternoon with sustained winds above 30mph and gusts up to 44mph. Please be sure to secure any loose items you may have that could be blown around. Tighten lines, but keep in mind that the lake level is rising.
Prepare for Freezing Temps
Many marinas will shut off the water during freezing weather to avoid bursting pipes. We are looking at 3 days of sub-freezing temperatures starting Sunday, so there is a chance you will be without water. If you do not have fresh water holding tanks, you may want to pick up some jugs of water. You may need water to flush your toilet and to clean dishes during the freeze. We call these water off days “Camping.” If you have a fresh water tank, be sure to top off your tank before the marina shuts off the water.
Lake Union Water Levels Rising
Each year the Army Corps of Engineers controls the flow of water through the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (Ballard Locks). The lake, currently at about 20 feet will be refilled to 22 feet to help meet increased summer water use, provide water necessary for fish passage, navigation and salinity control. The process of refilling begins February 15th and continues into the spring until the 22-foot level is reached. This means on fixed docks, the water level will rise 2 feet in the coming months.
Boaters and the in Floating Residences on fixed docks should monitor their mooring lines carefully during this time. If your ropes currently go from your boat/houseboat DOWN to the dock, these lines will loosen. If your ropes currently go from your boat/houseboat UP to the dock, the lines will tighten.
The following chart shows the lake levels over the last month, which has had very little variation. You can come back and look at this chart by clicking here.