Barry Gerding/Black Press Central Okanagan School District staff work with George Elliot Secondary students in Lake Country to set up flood barriers on the school property adjacent to Middle Vernon Creek.

2017’s Top Stories: The Lake Country flooding

Boaters were unable to use their boats for months after the Central Okanagan floods

Lake Country was not immune to the flooding that struck the Okanagan last spring.

In May, property owners along Bottom Wood Lake Road from Berry Road to Wood Lake dug trenches and sandbag barriers to deal with the overflow that overwhelmed Duck Lake.

Residents were also placed on evacuation alerts along Bottom Wood Lake Road, Deldor Road, Seymor Road, Reimche Road and Woodsdale Road if flooding worsened along Middle Vernon Creek.

Related: 2017’s Top Stories: Walk the Beach in Kelowna

Evacuation orders were given for the area around Tween Lakes and for properties near Wood Lake because of the high waters. Holiday Park was also heavily affected.

Flooding also compromised the Oyama Lake and Beaver Lake water supply, leaving the municipality to rely completely on the lower valley lakes for domestic uses of water, from turning on the tap to flushing the toilet.

While the extreme flood warning status continued to be issued by the regional Emergency Operation Centre, the shift in concern turned to the valley bottom lake levels rising, flushed up by the torrential spring runoff and the higher elevation snowpack still not melted.

Duck Lake and Wood Lake exceeded their normal maximum depth levels, raising potential flood issues for lakefront residents. That concern carried over to Kalamalka Lake and Okanagan Lake.

Lake Country parks staff improvised an idea to enhance dock protection by filling a series of garbage cans with water locked together by duck tape and bungy cord straps for the public boat launch dock on the Okanagan Centre shore of Okanagan Lake.

Erosion caused by the flushed out waterways upstream added debris in Wood Lake, which concerned boaters and also lakeside residents with docks.

Flood erosion in the upper Wood Lake watershed sent spring runoff pouring downstream ultimately into Duck Lake.

Boating was not recommended on Central Okanagan lakes because of the amount of debris that stayed in the waters for months. The Okanagan Centre Safe Harbour suffered damage and was closed for a long period.

The Central Okanagan Emergency Service Centre sent the province a $20 million bill to cover local costs of responding to the spring and early summer flooding which did not cover damage to public infrastructure and private property.

Lake Country’s flooding cleanup was estimated to cost $1.7 million.

To report a typo, email:


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Vandalism of fish incubators blow to well-known Lake Country family

Gary Kozub pioneered the kokanee incubator project and his family has been stewards of the salmon

Vehicle stolen after break-in at Lake Country home

RCMP are asking the public for any information about the whereabouts of the vehicle

Traffic backed up Northbound on Highway 97

Plan an alternate route if possible

Okanagan Boys and Girls Club’s youth program receives $50,000 grant

The Home Depot Canada Foundation gave the grant to support a housing project for youth

Regional District of Central Okanagan Holiday closures

The office will be closed from Dec. 25 to Jan. 1

‘Are we going to play?’ Alberta boy with rare illness no big deal for classmates

Porter Stanley is one of 30 people in the world to be diagnosed with Beare-Stevenson syndrome, a craniofacial disorder.

Publication ban on name of girl killed in Abbotsford school lifted

Reimer’s family had supported an application by Black Press to lift ban

Family saved but pets lost in Shuswap house fire

Firefighters manage to extinguish the blaze but a cat and dog perished

B.C. securities regulator probes ‘most expansive’ alleged trading scheme in its history

Liht Cannabis Corp states it’s doing internal investigation, welcomes BC Securities Commission probe

Air passenger rights: 6 things about what the Liberals are offering

For 3- to 6-hour delays, compensation is $400. Between 6 and 9 hours, $700. Over 9 hours is $1,000

RCMP, civilian vehicles rammed in North Okanagan incident

Police attempt to stop truck near Enderby, thought to be tied to alleged Salmon Arm armed robbery

New biker gang with ties to Hells Angels crops up in Lower Mainland

The Street Reapers were formed late last year and have been seen in Fort Langley.

10-lane George Massey bridge too big, B.C. study says

Consultants say replacement tunnel cost similar to new bridge

Couple caught up in B.C. Legislature bomb plot to learn their fate

John Nuttall and Amanda Korody were arrested as part of an undercover RCMP sting on Canada Day 2013

Most Read