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Families left stranded when heavy rains carved a deep chasm in a road at Camp du Nord near Ely, Minn., were able to leave Saturday after a St. Louis County crew worked throughout Friday to repair the damaged stretch.

"It divided our camp in half," said Michel Tigan, vice president of adventure and camp operations for YMCA of the North. But she said campers worked together to repair flood damage.

Campers at Camp du Nord near Ely, Minn., faced washed-out roads and trails before county crews repaired them, allowing them to leave.
Campers at Camp du Nord near Ely, Minn., faced washed-out roads and trails before county crews repaired them, allowing them to leave.

Karen Solas, Provided

It was just one of the many problems caused by intense and unrelenting rain across Minnesota on Saturday, as the already saturated southwestern region was again walloped with precipitation. The National Weather Service extended flood warnings across the southern and northeastern areas as well as parts of the metro.

Many waterways will remain under alert through the end of this week, and several rivers were not expected to crest for several days. The Mississippi River's rise likely won't ease until Friday, with a predicted crest of 20 feet at St. Paul; the Minnesota River was expected to crest Thursday at about 19 feet at Jordan. Just west of the Twin Cities, the South Fork Crow River was forecast to crest on Monday at Delano at about 19 feet.

The Cannon River was predicted to crest Sunday, matching its 2010 record levels at Northfield. On Friday night, the Dundas Dukes townball team summoned about 50 fans to the field to help with sandbagging and empty concession stands. Entire neighborhoods were submerged west of Waterville, which lies between two lakes west of Faribault and where volunteers filled sandbags all weekend.

Sump pumps were running and patio furniture was secured for Edina residents along Minnehaha Creek, where for days the city's Public Works Department has delivered sandbags in hopes that water levels won't approach the historic crest of 17.5 feet a decade ago.

Residents in southwestern Minnesota awoke to flooded yards and closed roads Saturday after heavy rains overnight. The Interstate 90 corridor received 2 to 2.5 inches of rain in the previous 24 hours, according to the Weather Service, and about 3.5 inches of rain fell northwest of Windom in that period.

Near the South Dakota border, flooding closed Hwy. 14 east of Lake Benton on Saturday. According to the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office, nearly every road in Verdi and Lake Benton townships was underwater in spots. The Blue Earth County Sheriff's Office on Saturday issued a no-wake order on several area lakes.

Cottonwood County declared a temporary state of emergency on Friday, opening up eligibility for federal and state relief aid, said Paul Johnson, the county's emergency management director. Preliminary estimates of damage to public infrastructure in the county started in the hundreds of thousands of dollars and could range up to more than a million, said Johnson. "It could be very high water for the next week," he said.

Residents in the county seat of Windom, where heavy rains sent the Des Moines River and Perkins Creek over their banks, said they awoke to water flowing into their yards and basements. Heavy rain began falling around 8:30 p.m. Friday, but tapered off and continued to fall until 4 a.m. Saturday, residents said.

Video (00:21) The volunteers worked to safeguard the home of Joe Fischenich, who lives next to the Perkins Creek in Windom. It overflowed due to heavy rainfall overnight.

"All of us are pretty wet," Warren Winkel said on Saturday morning. He said he had about 4 feet of water in the basement of his home near Perkins Creek.

Winkel, an 85-year-old retired construction manager, said he's lived there since the 1970s and is used to the creek flooding. He said he built a brick patio with a wall to block the water and was confident about his prospects Friday night. But on Saturday, he said he couldn't believe how quickly the water had risen.

"This is by far the worst that I've seen," he said.

Chairs in Yuliana Guerrero's kitchen in Windom, Minn., float due to flooding of about three feet of water after heavy rain June 21 and 22, 2024.
Chairs in Yuliana Guerrero's kitchen in Windom, Minn., float due to flooding of about three feet of water after heavy rain June 21 and 22, 2024.

Jp Lawrence

Winkel's neighbor, Yuliana Guerrero, said her family saw water seeping into their home at 10 p.m. Friday. When they awoke Saturday morning, they found 3 feet of water in their kitchen and their chairs afloat. The family recently moved to their house by the creek, and this year's flood is the first they've experienced there, she said.

"This is our second year," Guerrero said Friday. "(Our) last year!" added her husband, Reyes.

Joe Fischenich, a lifelong Windom resident, said the flooding has surprised him. The creek last year was almost dry, but this year it's flowing fast and high. Outside, volunteers unloaded sandbags to protect his home, and the rumble of sump pumps could be heard throughout the neighborhood.

"I've never seen it like this," said Fischenich, who was up until 1 a.m. Saturday stacking sandbags at his home. "Just got to go with the flow."

Campers helped Camp du Nord maintenance staff repair washed-out roads and trails on June 19.
Campers helped Camp du Nord maintenance staff repair washed-out roads and trails on June 19.

Karen Solas, Provided

At Camp du Nord near Ely, the washed-out road brought together the community of about 170 campers, Tigan said. While children engaged in camp activities, many parents picked up shovels and rebuilt a culvert, rerouting a stream and moving rock that had washed up against a historic log building.

"I am just so deeply proud of our teams and so in awe of our generous community," Tigan said.

Floodwaters damaged parts of Camp du Nord near Ely on June 18.
Floodwaters damaged parts of Camp du Nord near Ely on June 18.

Karen Solas, Provided