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Water Levels: Lake Minnetonka and Gray's Bay Dam

Questions about water levels, canoeing, or the MCWD's operation of the Gray's Bay dam? Learn more about Gray's Bay Dam.

You can view real-time water level readings of Lake Minnetonka here and Minnehaha Creek here, as part of a partnership between MCWD and the U.S. Geological Survey. Please note, the USGS refers to creek flow as "discharge" on their site.

Ideal creek flows for paddling are between 75 and 150 cubic feet per second (cfs). We do not recommend paddling when the creek's flow is higher than 150 cfs. Conditions can change rapidly, especially after rainfall. We recommend using the real-time flow at Hiawatha Ave to gauge how fast the creek is flowing in the lower half of the creek, and the Gray's Bay Dam discharge to gauge how fast the creek is flowing in the upper half of the creek. Learn more about paddling the creek.

Follow Gray's Bay Dam on Twitter for regular updates on water level and dam discharge.

Most recent reading (October 5, 2022)
Lake Minnetonka: 927.73 feet | Gray's Bay Dam: 0 CFS
Date Lake Level (feet above sea level) Dam Discharge (cubic feet per second) Explanation
October 5, 2022 927.73 Dam closed 2022 has been record dry. Driest September on record. 4th driest June 1-Sept. 30 on record. MCWD published a water level update on Sept. 30 which can be viewed here: https://mailchi.mp/minnehahacreek/waterlevelupdate-9369358?e=876ec31754
October 3, 2022 927.74 Dam closed 2022 has been record dry. Driest September on record. 4th driest June 1-Sept. 30 on record. MCWD published a water level update on Sept. 30 which can be viewed here: https://mailchi.mp/minnehahacreek/waterlevelupdate-9369358?e=876ec31754
September 30, 2022 927.76 Dam closed Please see MCWD's home page for a water level update on how drought and record low rain has caused very low water levels across the watershed.
September 28, 2022 927.80 Dam closed As of 9/28/22, MCWD remains in a severe drought. The Twin Cities has received 18.50 in. of rain, which is 7.5 in. below normal and 2.82 in. less than this date in 2021. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka has dropped 9 in. since the dam closure.
September 26, 2022 927.87 Dam closed With no rain in the forecast, Sept. 2022 will be the driest Sept. on record with only 0.23 in. of rain. The past 4 months (June-Sept.) will go down as the 4th driest on record & have been the driest since 1936, which was the peak of the Dust Bowl Drought.
September 23, 2022 927.90 Dam closed As of 9/23/22, MCWD remains in a severe drought. The Twin Cities has received 18.42 in. of rain, which is 7.02 in. below normal and 2.82 in. less than this date in 2021. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka has dropped ~8 in. since the dam's closure.
September 21, 2022 927.97 Dam closed As of 9/19/22, MCWD remains in a severe drought. The Twin Cities has received 18.42 in. of rain, which is 6.81 in. below normal and 2.82 in. less than this date in 2021. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka has dropped ~7.2 in. since the dam closure.
September 19, 2022 927.98 Dam closed As of 9/19/22, MCWD remains in a severe drought. The Twin Cities has received 18.42 in. of rain, which is 6.62 in. below normal and 2.72 in. less than this time last year. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka has dropped ~7.2 in. since the dam closure.
September 16, 2022 928.00 Dam closed As of 9/16/22, MCWD remains in a severe drought. The Twin Cities has received 18.38 inches of rain, which is 6.37 in. below normal and 2.5 in. less than this time last year. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka has dropped ~7 in. since the dam's closure.
September 14, 2022 928.02 Dam closed Less than 1% of Minnesota is in a severe drought, which includes MCWD. As of 9/12/22 the Twin Cities has received 18.38 in. of rain, which is 6.18 in. below normal and 2.52 in. less than this time last year. Evaporation will continue to drop water levels.
September 12, 2022 928.07 Dam closed Less than 1% of Minnesota is in a severe drought, which includes MCWD. As of 9/12/22 the Twin Cities has received 18.38 in. of rain, which is 5.98 in. below normal and 2.38 in. less than this time last year. Evaporation will continue to drop water levels.
September 8, 2022 928.13 Dam closed Less than 1% of Minnesota is in a severe drought, which includes MCWD. As of 9/8/2022, the Twin Cities has received 18.27 inches of rain, which is 5.68 inches below normal and 2.5 inches less than this time last year. Minimal rain is in the 7day forecast.
September 6, 2022 928.13 Dam closed MCWD remains in a severe drought as rain totals are 5.48 in. below normal. Due to evaporation, Lake Minnetonka’s level has dropped ~5.4 in. since the dam closure on July 21. Due to ongoing dry conditions the dam will likely remain closed through 2022.
September 2, 2022 928.24 Dam closed Due to the ongoing severe drought and summer evaporation rates, water levels continue to decrease, and the dam will likely remain closed the rest of 2022. Since the dam closure on July 21, Lake Minnetonka's level has dropped ~4 in. due to evaporation.
August 31, 2022 928.25 Dam closed Due to the ongoing severe drought and summer evaporation rates, water levels continue to decrease, and the dam will likely remain closed the rest of 2022. Since the dam closure on July 21, Lake Minnetonka's level has dropped ~4 in. due to evaporation.
August 29, 2022 928.32 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.61 in. below normal. Minimal rain is in the 7-day forecast.
August 26, 2022 928.27 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 5.38 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 24, 2022 928.30 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 5.12 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 22, 2022 928.32 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.84 inches below normal. Minimal rain is in the 7-day forecast.
August 19, 2022 928.36 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.68 inches below normal. Minimal rain is in the 7-day forecast.
August 17, 2022 928.34 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.8 in. below normal. ½ in. of rain is forecast through Aug 19.
August 15, 2022 928.35 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.49 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 12, 2022 928.36 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.7 in. below normal. Dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 10, 2022 928.41 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.7 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 8, 2022 928.43 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.41 in. below normal. Rain the past weekend increased the lake level 1.5 in.
August 5, 2022 928.30 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 5.30 in. below normal. Approx. 1 inch of rain is forecast over the weekend.
August 3, 2022 928.36 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 5.02 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
August 1, 2022 928.35 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.90 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
July 29, 2022 928.41 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.54 in. below normal. Hot & dry weather will continue to drop water levels.
July 27, 2022 928.48 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.29 in. below normal. See the homepage for the July 22 water level update.
July 25, 2022 928.48 Dam closed The dam remains closed, as the lake historically didn’t discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is in a “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 4.14 in. below normal. See the homepage for the July 22 water level update.
July 22, 2022 928.55 Dam closed The dam is closed per the operating plan, as the lake historically did not discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is currently in the “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 3.96 in. below normal in 2022.
July 21, 2022 928.58 Dam closed The dam is closed per the operating plan, as the lake historically did not discharge into the creek when the lake fell below 928.60ft. MCWD is currently in the “Severe Drought” designation as rain totals are 3.84 in. below normal in 2022.
July 20, 2022 928.66 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Moderate Drought” designation as rain totals are 3.71 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft.
July 18, 2022 928.68 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Moderate Drought” designation as rain totals are 3.47 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft.
July 15, 2022 928.70 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Moderate Drought” designation as rain totals are 3.17 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft.
July 13, 2022 928.72 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Moderate Drought” designation as rain totals are 3 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft.
July 11, 2022 928.78 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals are 3 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft.
July 8, 2022 928.78 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals are 2.7 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft
July 6, 2022 928.78 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals are 2.4 in. below normal in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD & will continue to decline. The dam will close when the lake falls below 928.60 ft
July 5, 2022 928.80 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals were 3.45 inches below normal for June. Water levels are low across MCWD & are expected to continue decline unless the area receives significant rain
July 1, 2022 928.84 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals were 3.45 inches below normal for June. Water levels are low across MCWD & are expected to continue decline unless the area receives significant rain
June 29, 2022 928.86 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals are 3.23 inches below normal for June. Water levels are low across MCWD and are expected to decline due to minimal rain in the 7 day forecast.
June 27, 2022 928.90 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as rain totals are 1.5 inches below normal for 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD and are expected to decline due to minimal rain in the 7 day forecast.
June 24, 2022 928.97 12 Discharge remains at 12 cfs. MCWD is currently in the “Abnormally Dry” drought designation as the lack of rain has led to a 1.2 inch deficit in rain totals in 2022. Water levels are low across MCWD. Approx. 1 inch of rain is forecasted through June 26.
June 22, 2022 929.02 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12cfs, which is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow.Water levels are low from the 2021 drought & 2022 rain totals are 1 in. below normal.The 7day forecast shows 0.30 in. of rain.
June 20, 2022 929.04 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12cfs.The release or 12cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow.Water levels are low from the 2021 drought and below normal rain in 2022.There is no rain in the 7day forecast.
June 17, 2022 929.09 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. The release or 12 cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow as water level remain low from the 2021 drought. There is no rain in the 7-day forecast.
June 15, 2022 929.12 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. The release or 12 cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow as water level remain low from the 2021 drought. There is minimal rain in the 7-day forecast.
June 13, 2022 929.11 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. The release or 12 cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow as water level remain low from the 2021 drought. There is minimal rain in the 7-day forecast.
June 10, 2022 929.15 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. The release or 12 cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow as water level remain low from the 2021 drought. There is minimal rain in the 7-day forecast.
June 8, 2022 929.18 12 Discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. The release or 12 cfs is being done to both retain water on the lake AND prolong creek flow as water level remain low from the 2021 drought. There is no rain in the 7-day forecast.
June 6, 2022 929.18 12 Dam discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. Due to the 2021 drought, water levels are still low. The release rate of 12 cfs is being done to retain lake water AND prolong creek flow in case water levels remain low.
June 3, 2022 929.24 12 Dam discharge remains at the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. Due to the 2021 drought, water levels are still low. The release rate of 12 cfs is being done to retain lake water AND prolong creek flow in case water levels remain low.
June 1, 2022 929.25 12 The dam is open & is releasing the min. allowed rate of 12 cfs. Due to the 2021 drought, water levels are still low. The release rate of 12 cfs is being done to retain lake water AND prolong creek flow in case water levels remain low.
May 27, 2022 929.20 Dam closed Water levels remain low across the watershed from the 2021 drought. The dam will remain closed over the weekend. The dam will be opened next week and release the minimum allowed discharge due to low water levels.
May 25, 2022 929.15 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~34 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue from today's rain.
May 23, 2022 929.18 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for late-May and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~24 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue. Approximately 0.6-inches of rain is forecast for May 25.
May 19, 2022 929.20 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at 32.7 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue
May 17, 2022 929.18 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~57.1 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue
May 13, 2022 929.20 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~122 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue from this past week's rain.
May 11, 2022 929.00 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for early-May and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~38 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.
May 9, 2022 929.00 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for early-May and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~39 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.
May 6, 2022 928.96 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for early-May and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~48 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.
May 4, 2022 928.95 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~64 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue from this past weekend’s rain.
May 2, 2022 928.95 Dam closed Due to minimal rain in the 7-day forecast the dam remains closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~88 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue from this past weekend’s rain.
April 29, 2022 928.75 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for late-April and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~37 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue. 1-inch of rain is forecast April 30-May 1. Water levels will be reassessed on May 2.
April 27, 2022 928.75 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for late-April and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~43 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.
April 25, 2022 928.81 Dam closed The dam remains closed due to a lower-than-average lake level for late-April and because Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~52 cfs at Hiawatha Ave. from this weekend’s rain.
April 22, 2022 928.66 Dam closed Due to a lower than average lake level for mid-April the dam is currently closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~56 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.
April 20, 2022 928.64 Dam closed Due to a lower than average lake level for mid-April the dam is currently closed. Minnehaha Creek is flowing at ~33 cfs at Hiawatha Avenue.