FARGO — The National Weather Service in Grand Forks reported that the Red River in the Fargo-Moorhead area is expected to crest in the early hours of Friday, April 3, at 33 feet or less.

During an online briefing Thursday morning, March 26, weather service spokesman Greg Gust said the Red River is expected to crest around 7 a.m. April 3 at 31 to 33 feet, well into major flood stage in Fargo, but far below the record crest of 40.84 feet set in 2009.

Gust said the Wild Rice River near Abercrombie, N.D., is also expected to rise over the coming days, reaching into major flood stage early next week, when he said a crest could occur.

He added that the Sheyenne, Maple, Rush, and Goose Rivers in North Dakota were all expected to rise over the coming weekend, possibly reaching into minor or moderate flood stages through next week.

Gust said that in Minnesota, the north branch of the Buffalo River and the Wild Rice River were expected to start rising sometime next week.

As of Thursday morning, the Red River was just over 19 feet. Minor flood stage in Fargo starts at 18 feet, moderate flood stage begins at 25 feet and major flood stage is 30 feet.

The persistent dry weather and gentle spring thaw have kept the flood outlook consistent in recent weeks, and Gust said Thursday that while precipitation is expected in parts of the Red River Valley in the coming days as well as next week, it isn't expected to significantly impact river levels.

Last year’s flood crested at 35.03 feet in Fargo, the 10th highest on record.

Fargo officials have been planning to defend against a potential 37-foot flood this spring.

Gust said Thursday it was too early for a flood forecast for Grand Forks, but he said that could come sometime next week.