Navigation locks on Columbia, Snake rivers to close for annual maintenance

Published Feb. 20, 2013

WALLA WALLA, Wash. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will close navigation locks at dams on the Columbia and Snake rivers in March to conduct routine annual inspections, repairs and maintenance.

All Walla Walla District navigation locks will close to recreational and commercial river traffic at 6 a.m. on Saturday, March 2. McNary Dam’s navigation lock, located at Columbia River (Mile 292), is scheduled to reopen at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, March 16.  On the Snake River, Ice Harbor (Mile 10), Lower Monumental (Mile 41), Little Goose (Mile 70) and Lower Granite (Mile 107) navigation locks are slated to reopen at 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, March 23.  The additional week is needed to perform not only routine inspections and maintenance, but also some non-routine work, including replacement of unwatering pumps at Little Goose and Lower Monumental dams, upstream lock gate seal and wire rope replacement and mooring bit repair at Ice Harbor Dam, and an in-depth periodic inspection at Lower Granite Dam.

Portland District’s Bonneville, The Dalles and John Day navigation locks at Columbia River Miles 145, 191 and 216, respectively, are scheduled to close for annual maintenance from 6 a.m. on March 2 until 6 p.m. on March 16.  

The Corps coordinates these annual closures with inland shippers and cruise lines to achieve minimal impact to the various industries that use the locks.

The Corps’ Portland and Walla Walla districts maintain the commercial navigation route from the Pacific Ocean 465 miles inland to Lewiston, Idaho.  The Columbia-Snake navigation system is vital to the economic health of the Pacific Northwest.  The system accommodated an average of 17.5 million short tons of cargo annually from 1999 to 2008, according to the Corps’ Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center. 10 million tons equals about 2,700 barges, 100,000 railcars or 350,000 semi-trucks.

Public Notices and other navigation lock information are available on the Walla Walla District website at, and on Portland District’s website at



Public Affairs Office

Release no. 13-012