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Fromberg residents eye rainfall leading up to the anniversary of a historic flood

 The Clark's Fork River by Fromberg on May 24, 2023.
Kayla Desroches
Yellowstone Public Radio
The Clark's Fork River by Fromberg on May 24, 2023.

Some Montanans still reeling from last June’s historic floods say recent thunderstorms have them feeling nervous.

76-year-old Larry Richardson lives in Fromberg, where his property by the Clark’s Fork River still shows signs of the flood that destroyed his home last June: a water-logged lawnmower, upturned soil and a broken pump that he says he won’t replace until he knows what the river will do.

“I’m probably not going to feel safe until after Memorial day,” he said.

Meteorologist Bob Setzenfand says the National Weather Service is forecasting more rainfall, and while area rivers may run fast and high, flooding this weekend is not expected.

“The combination that you really have to be concerned about is if you get a lot of rapid snow melt and rain at the same time and, from what I’m seeing, it looks like a lot of this rain coming up this weekend should be more off the mountains,” said Setzenfand.

Back in Fromberg, another resident of the floodplain, Janna Van Rooyen, says she thinks a repeat of last year’s flood this spring is unlikely.

“Are we worried about it every time it rains hard? Sure. Sure.”

Kayla writes about energy policy, the oil and gas industry and new electricity developments.