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Flash flooding reported on parts of North Shore

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news Duluth, 55802
Duluth Minnesota 424 W. First St. 55802

Storms brought torrential rain to parts of the North Shore and the Boundary Waters on Saturday, prompting flash flood warnings for some areas.

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Radar indicated rainfall of 4 or more inches in just a few hours on Saturday evening in southwestern Cook County, including the Lutsen and Tofte areas, the National Weather Service reported. The Weather Service received a report of some washout issues in a construction zone along Minnesota Highway 61 near Lutsen, but Cook County dispatch reported that the highway remained open to traffic.

Jeff Monaghan of Esko passed through the flood zone while driving his delivery truck from Grand Marais back to Duluth. At about 8 p.m. he said the overflowing creeks and streams had pushed debris - including rocks and tree trunks - onto the highway in some locations near Lutsen and Tofte. At places where the highway passed by rock faces, "there was just one continuous waterfall from that," he said.

Monaghan said sheriff's deputies and Minnesota state troopers were out directing traffic in the flooded areas.

There was a spotter report of quarter-size hail in Tofte at 6:40 p.m., and a flash flood warning was in effect for the evening.

Flash flood warnings also were issued earlier in the day for much of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, where repeated rounds of storms on Saturday may have brought in excess of a half-foot of rain to some areas, the Weather Service reported. The Crane Lake and Buyck areas, just west of the BWCAW, also saw heavy rain.

Additional rounds of storms moved across the Northland later Saturday and early Sunday. There was a report of half-dollar-size hail near Ball Bluff in Aitkin County, where it reportedly caused damage to a car. Quarter-size hail was reported at Deer River in Itasca County.

The storms brought heavy rain and a vivid lightning show to the Twin Ports, but no immediate reports of severe weather.

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