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Monster Lake Swallows 2 Towns and Thousands of Acres of Land

DEVILS LAKE, N.D. (AP) - It's been called a slow-growing monster: a huge lake that has steadily expanded over the last 20 years, swallowing up thousands of acres, hundreds of buildings and at least two towns in its rising waters.

Devils Lake keeps getting larger because it has no natural river or stream to carry away excess rain and snowmelt. Now it has climbed within 6 feet of overflowing, raising fears that some downstream communities could be washed away if the water level isn't reduced.

And those worries are compounded by another problem: Scientists believe the pattern of heavy rain and snow that filled the basin is likely to continue for at least another decade.

No other place in America has faced such a dilemma. The nation's only other significant "closed-basin" lake is the Great Salt Lake.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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