Many East Basin residents have a vested interest in the
clearance available under the Road 38 bridge: “Will my boat, barge, pontoon
boat fit under the bridge?” While, during the summer there is usually more than
5 ft of clearance, in early spring and after periods of heavy rain, that
clearance can be as low as 37” (as in Apr 2014). That’s too low for most
pontoon boats and larger boats.
Now, you can find out how much clearance is available before you set out.
How? By logging in to the Mississippi Valley Conservation Water Levels Site
Click on the box for Sharbot Lake and fill in a “Start Date” (at the bottom) and hit “Submit”. You will see a chart that shows the height of the water level in metres-above-sea-level (MASL).
For example, on the 2nd of Nov 2015 the water was at 191.730 metres above sea level. From actual measurements and a small calculation, it was found that the underside of the bridge structure is 193.400 MASL. The clearance under the bridge is the difference between the current water level and 193.400.
In our example, on 2 Nov, that clearance was (193.400 – 191.730) or 1.670 metres (or just under 67”). Compare the clearance with the height of your boat above the waterline, and you’ll know if you’ll fit under the bridge.