After hitting Adams County, Friday morning’s thunderstorm passed through Clay County and on toward points more distant, causing some damage.
In Fairfield, a tree had fallen, completely blocking one of the streets. Alta and Rod Coat of Fairfield said the tree fell next to their house after midnight. The Coats said they heard the tree fall because the thunder kept them and their dogs up all night.
“I heard something crash and thought ‘that didn’t sound like thunder,’ ” Rod said.
Alta said the wind also had blown down the corn in her garden.
Elbert VonSpreckelsen of Clay Center worked clearing out tree branches that had fallen on his property Friday morning. He said he was glad that no tree limbs fell on a power line that hung beneath the large tree on his property.
“It could have been a lot worse,” VonSpreckelsen said. “We’re lucky. We really are.”
Kayla Anderson of Clay Center had a large tree fall on her house. The only visible damage was to the front patio gutter. She said she didn’t notice the tree until the morning and her first thought was “How am I going to get that off?”
Andersen said her father will be helping to move the tree later.
Wayne Peshek of Clay Center also had a tree branch fall in his yard. The tree partially fell in the road, and the city had helped clear some of the wood. He said he plans to use the wood for firewood.
In Harvard and Sutton, there was little to no damage. Mostly small branches fell either in the road or in yards.
Kenesaw, Heartwell, Minden and Upland were a few of the other communities reporting damage from Friday’s storms.
The National Weather Service storm log shows that a tree limb 8-10 inches in diameter was reported snapped in Minden at 12:43 a.m. At 12:37, extensive tree damage was reported at a rural home three miles northeast of Upland, with a branch run through the roof of the house, severe damage to a grain bin and branches pushed deep into the ground.
Homeowners in Heartwell were busy Friday with tractors and loaders removing broken tree limbs.
Wind speed reports from around the area included 67 mph at the Superior airport (5:57 a.m.), 60 mph in Burr Oak, Kansas (5:52 a.m.), 62 mph northeast of Webber, Kansas (5:57 a.m.), and 57 mph southeast of Davenport (5:55 a.m.).
Locations to the south of Hastings received the most rainfall in Tribland from the overnight storms, according to the Nebraska Rainfall Assessment and Information Network. Here are a few of the totals for 7 a.m. Thursday through 7 a.m. Friday:
— Northwest of Superior: 2.56 inches
— Southwest of Nelson: 1.66
— East of Red Cloud: 2.22
— Northeast of Franklin: 1.52
— Smith Center, Kansas: 1.22 (courtesy of Bob Levin)
— Southeast of Guide Rock: 2.08
— East of Hardy: 1.78
— Southeast of Ruskin: 1.53
— Southwest of Deshler: 1.74
— South of Fairfield: 1.14
— Northeast of Blue Hill: 1.13
Locations in the Minden-Hildreth area reported up to 1.25 inches of rainfall.
More rainfall across southern Nebraska will add more water to the Harlan County Reservoir and Lovewell Reservoir, both of which already are full.
As of midday Friday, the elevation of Harlan County Reservoir on the Republican River between Republican City and Alma stood at 1,951.86 feet above mean sea level, meaning the lake is 100% full and the flood pool is 16.8% full. The flood pool is full once the lake reaches 1,973.5 msl.
Inflow into the lake at Alma was 1,024 cubic feet per second, with outflow from the Harlan County Dam south of Republican City at 265 cfs.
Friday morning’s rainfall included 2.75 inches of rain near Cambridge, 2.34 inches just south of Oxford and 1.6 inches east of Orleans — meaning more and more runoff water was headed toward the lake.
Downstream of the Harlan dam, water flows through the Republican River through Franklin, Webster and Nuckolls counties before crossing the state line into Kansas near Hardy. Republican River water is diverted near Guide Rock for delivery to the Lovewell Reservoir near Webber, Kansas, via the Courtland Canal.
As of Friday, Lovewell Reservoir was full and the flood pool was 41.1% full, with inflow into the lake at 89.5 cfs and outflow at 50.2 cfs. The lake elevation stood at 1,582.6 msl — leaving the lake less than 13 feet to rise before reaching the top of the flood pool.
As of Friday, the marina boat ramps still was usable, but the water was encroaching into the parking lot, and the ramp was difficult to see, the park management said in a social media post.
At the marina, only one courtesy dock was available. The Cedar Point boat ramp was unusable due to the flooding.
Lake users were urged to use caution when loading and unloading and while boating.