Iowa Water Science Center

Flood of June 4-5, 2002, in the Maquoketa River Basin, East-Central Iowa

By David A. Eash

Open-File Report 2004-1250—3rd Edition

Prepared in cooperation with the Iowa Department of Transportation
and the Iowa Highway Research Board (Project HR-140)

This report is available as a pdf (1,227 KB).


Severe flooding occurred on June 4-5, 2002, in the Maquoketa River Basin in Delaware, Dubuque, Jackson, and Jones Counties, following thunderstorm activity over east-central Iowa. The rain gage at Cascade, Iowa, recorded a 14-hour rainfall of 6.0 inches at noon on June 4. Radar indications estimated as much as 8 to 10 inches of rain fell in the upper-middle part of the Maquoketa River Basin. Peak discharges on the Maquoketa River at Monticello of 47,500 cubic feet per second (recurrence interval estimated to be greater than 500 years as computed using flood-estimation equations developed by the U.S. Geological Survey), and at the Maquoketa River near Maquoketa streamflow-gaging station of 47,900 cubic feet per second (recurrence interval about 50 years), were determined for the flood. The peak discharge of the 2002 flood is nearly equal that of the 1944 flood (48,000 cubic feet per second), the largest flood on record in the Maquoketa River Basin. The 2002 flood is the largest known flood in the North Fork Maquoketa River Basin. A peak discharge of 22,600 cubic feet per second (recurrence interval about 110 years) was determined for the flood at the North Fork Maquoketa River near Fulton gaging station. Information about the basin and flood history, the 2002 thunderstorms and associated flooding, and a profile of high-water marks are presented for selected reaches along the Maquoketa and North Fork Maquoketa Rivers.


Basin Description
Flood History
Flood of June 15, 1925
Flood of June 27, 1944
Flood of June 13, 1947
Flood of June 4-5, 2002
Storm Description
Flood Description
Flood Profile
Appendix: Temporary Bench Marks and Reference Points

Suggested Citation:

Eash, D.A., 2004, Flood of June 4-5, 2002, in the Maquoketa River Basin, east-central Iowa: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2004-1250, 29 p.

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Send questions or comments about this report to the author, D.A. Eash (319) 358-3615.

For more information about USGS activities in Iowa, visit the USGS Iowa Water Science Center home page.

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Last modified: Saturday, January 12 2013, 11:33:39 PM
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