News & Events

June 30:  Water Level Management Update for the Rideau Canal

Parks Canada’s water management team continues to actively monitor water levels and flows, and weather forecasts across the Rideau Canal. These factors are used to determine dam operations on a daily basis for the Rideau Canal.

For more information regarding watershed status, please visit the website of your local conservation authority. These are Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority ( and Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (

Parks Canada has launched the Ontario Waterways Water Management InfoNet on the Rideau Canal website at

The InfoNet contains background information on water management practices, water management updates, frequently asked questions about water management, various reports on water management, and the most recent water levels of lakes along both the Rideau Canal and the Trent-Severn Waterway.

Of specific note is the water levels tool within the InfoNet which provides lake levels data from the last 30 days and graphic representation of levels for the current year. The information comes from hydrometric gauges located at key points along both waterways and is vetted by trained and experienced Parks Canada water management staff.

This information is intended as supplemental information only. Stakeholders should continue to refer to their respective Conservation Authority or the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry as the primary source for relevant flood forecasting information specific to their area.


Rainfall amounts for May and June have been 25-50% below normal. The 14 day forecast suggests a transition to high temperatures. There is 0 mm of rainfall forecasted for this week and 5 mm forecasted for the following week. Most of the rainfall forecasted is associated with thunderstorms and could be highly variable from one location to another.

Cataraqui River

The lack of rainfall and high temperatures has resulted in low water levels on the Cataraqui Lakes. Forecasted draft can be found here: If the additional rainfall forecasted is received it is possible that levels may increase back up to 5′ draft levels.

Tay River

Bobs Lake is below average level for this time of year. Outflows from Bobs Lake were decreased last week to try and hold back as much of the rainfall as possible. Water levels on Christie Lake will continue to decline until additional flow is sent out of Bobs Lake.

Rideau River

Wolfe Lake, Upper Rideau and Big Rideau have water levels that are below average. Levels in the river from Smiths Falls to Ottawa all remain in navigation range. 

For more information about the Rideau Canal, visit or follow us on Facebook and Twitter @RideauCanalNHS.