22-043 Boise River flows to increase to balance remaining space with recent rainfall

Walla Walla District Corps of Engineers
Published June 12, 2022

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Bureau of Reclamation will increase Boise River flows through the City of Boise from approximately 1,250 to 2,750 cubic feet per second (cfs), on Monday, June 13, 2022.

Recent heavy rain has continued to help fill reservoirs in the Boise River System.  With the current weather system and due to the remaining snowpack, flows will be increased on the Boise River to ensure there is enough space in the reservoirs to store the higher incoming flows from the mountains.  These water releases are necessary to help reduce the risk of having much higher flows through Boise if the reservoir system fills to quickly, which can happen with rapidly melting snow and seasonal precipitation.

Additional adjustments in water releases from Lucky Peak Dam and Lake are possible during the coming days, depending upon weather conditions and inflows. Flows through the City of Boise could also fluctuate depending upon water diversions for irrigation use through the New York Canal, as determined by Idaho Water District Number 63.

The public should be aware that river flows may frequently change during the snow-melt season. A flow rate of 7,000 cfs, or about 10 feet in water depth, as measured at the Glenwood Bridge gauge, is considered flood-stage level on the Boise River. 

Officials advise the public to be aware of risks associated with increased Boise River flows. The water is deep, cold and fast. Extreme caution should be used near the riverbanks. 

For real-time Boise River flows at Corps and Reclamation facilities, visit https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/rtindex/boise.html
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The Corps of Engineers and the Bureau of Reclamation operate three dams on the Boise River as a system to manage flood control and irrigation storage needs — Lucky Peak Dam, Arrowrock Dam and Anderson Ranch Dam. Storage capacity provided by Reclamation’s Arrowrock and Anderson Ranch dams, and the Corps’ Lucky Peak Dam, combined with well-planned water releases, help manage Boise River flows through the city of Boise.

Public Affairs Office

Release no. 22-043