Vermont Public is independent, community-supported media, serving Vermont with trusted, relevant and essential information. We share stories that bring people together, from every corner of our region. New to Vermont Public? Start here.

© 2024 Vermont Public | 365 Troy Ave. Colchester, VT 05446

Public Files:

For assistance accessing our public files, please contact or call 802-655-9451.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

MAP: Here's where the December 2023 river flooding, rainfall hit hardest in Vermont


As temperatures rose and rain fell Sunday night and into Monday, snow melted from Vermont's mountains, and rivers swelled.

Five of those rivers reached major or moderate flood stage, according to the National Weather Service.

Over the course of Monday and into Tuesday, the Lamoille River in Jeffersonville and Johnson and the Winooski River in Essex Junction reached major flood stage, the highest designation the NWS uses. Meanwhile the Winooski River in Waterbury and Montpelier, the Mad River in Moretown, Otter Creek in Rutland and the Passumpsic River in Barnet all reached moderate flood stage.

As for rainfall, the heaviest reports on Monday and Tuesday were recorded in the southern part of the state, with Guilford receiving nearly 5 inches, Marlboro around 4 inches, and Wilmington, Stamford, and Brattleboro just over 3 inches. Quechee, in the southeastern part of the state, received just over 4 inches.

Marlon Verasamy with NWS says total rainfall wasn’t anywhere close to what the state experienced in July.

“We saw 2-3 [inches], 2-4 [inches] across the southern parts of the state, we saw a little less than that across the northern half of the state,” he said of the event this week. That compares to the 5-9 inches that fell over two days in July.

But snowmelt did exceed expectations during this storm, according to Conor Lahiff, also with NWS.

"I think originally we were thinking on the order of about an inch or so was going to ... come out of the snowpack and come into the the rivers," Lahiff said. "And now looking back at, it probably was more closer to 2 inches, and maybe even more."

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message.

Updated: December 20, 2023 at 12:37 PM EST
We've updated the map and text of this story to include combined rainfall from Dec. 18 and 19, rather than point-in-time counts from just Dec. 18.
Updated: December 20, 2023 at 10:36 AM EST
We've clarified that the rainfall amounts are "point in time" measurements. We also made note that the Lamoille River reached major flood stage in Jeffersonville, in addition to Johnson.
Updated: December 19, 2023 at 6:43 PM EST
This story was updated with additional information from Conor Lahiff with the National Weather Service.
Corey Dockser is Vermont Public’s first data journalist, a role combining programming and journalism to produce stories that would otherwise go unheard. His work ranges from complex interactive visualizations to simple web scraping and data cleaning. Corey graduated from Northeastern University in 2022 with a BS in data science and journalism. He previously worked at The Buffalo News in Buffalo, New York as a Dow Jones News Fund Data Journalism intern, and at The Boston Globe.
Elodie is a reporter and producer for Vermont Public. She previously worked as a multimedia journalist at the Concord Monitor, the St. Albans Messenger and the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript, and she's freelanced for The Atlantic, the Christian Science Monitor, the Berkshire Eagle and the Bennington Banner. In 2019, she earned her MFA in creative nonfiction writing from Southern New Hampshire University.
Lexi covers science and health stories for Vermont Public.
Latest Stories