Floods Continue along the Mississippi River
acquired May 8, 2011 download large image (11 MB, JPEG, 5200x6000)
Floods Continue along the Mississippi River
acquired April 29, 2011 download large image (8 MB, JPEG, 5200x6000)
Floods Continue along the Mississippi River
acquired May 3, 2010 download large image (8 MB, JPEG, 5200x6000)

Flooding spread south along the Mississippi River in early May 2011, parts of the river visibly widening in a matter of days. The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Aqua satellite acquired these images on May 8, 2011 (top), April 29, 2011 (middle), and May 3, 2010 (bottom).

All three images use a combination of infrared and visible light to increase the contrast between water and land. Water varies in color from electric blue to navy. Clouds vary in color from pale blue-green to off-white. Vegetation is green, and soil is brown.

The image from 2010 shows relatively normal conditions along the Mississippi River. The images from April and May 2011, on the other hand, show flooded conditions from north of Memphis, Tennessee, to Vicksburg, Mississippi. Flooding is also apparent on the White River, and increases substantially between April 29 and May 8, 2011.

On May 9, 2011, the Advanced Hydrological Prediction Service (AHPS) of the National Weather Service reported that the Mississippi’s water level reached 47.82 feet (14.58 meters) at 11:00 a.m. CDT in Memphis, Tennessee, and 51.9 feet (15.8 meters) at noon CDT in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Both sites were in major flood stage, the AHPS reported, and the water level in Vicksburg was projected to reach 55.6 feet (16.9 meters) around noon on May 13.

  1. References

  2. National Weather Service. Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service. Accessed May 9, 2011.

NASA images courtesy MODIS Rapid Response Team, Goddard Space Flight Center. Caption by Michon Scott.

Aqua - MODIS

Floods Continue along the Mississippi River

Image Location
Image Location
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Early Spring Floods in Indiana High Waters along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers Rising Waters on the Mississippi River Rising Waters on the Minnesota and Mississippi Rivers Rising Waters on the James River Retreating Snow and Advancing Water in the Upper Midwest Receding Snow Sets Stage for Floods near Fargo Spring Flooding in the Upper Midwest Rising Rivers in the U.S. Midwest Rising Waters along the Red River Spring Floods in Saskatchewan Spring Flooding in Manitoba Heavy Rain in Central United States Flooding along the Mississippi River Continued Flooding along the Mississippi Flooding along the James River, South Dakota Flooding in Wake of Levee Breach Spring Floods in the U.S. Midwest and Canada Flooding along the Wabash and Ohio Rivers Flooding at the Junction of the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers Floods Spread South along the Mississippi River High Waters along the Mississippi River Flooding Continues along the Red River Flooding in Memphis Flooding in Arkansas Flooding reaches Vicksburg, Mississippi Morganza Floodway, 1973 Floodwaters near Natchez Rising Waters on the Lower Mississippi Morganza Spillway Opens in Louisiana Mississippi Floods in Arkansas and Tennessee Mississippi Floods in Missouri and Tennessee Flooding near New Madrid, Missouri Water in the Morganza Floodway Morganza Floodway after Five Days of Flow Mississippi Floods near Vicksburg Sediment Plume in Lake Pontchartrain Lingering Floods along the Mississippi River Lower Mississippi River Remains Swollen Waters Spread Across Floodway above Morgan City Lay of the Land Between Old River and the Mississippi Floodwaters Recede along Wabash and Ohio Rivers Floodwaters Retreat from Birds Point-New Madrid Floodway Lingering Floods in Louisiana Morganza Floodway Lingering Floodwaters near Vicksburg, Mississippi Sediment from the Mississippi Floods Sediment in the Gulf of Mexico Floods Recede around the Wabash-Ohio Confluence