15-040 Dworshak Reservoir offers July 4 holiday fun

Published June 30, 2015
AHSAHKA, Idaho – Enjoy a variety of outdoor summer fun opportunities at Dworshak Dam and Reservoir during the Independence Day holiday weekend – boating, camping, water sports, swimming, fishing, hiking and more.

“Although the reservoir level has recently been dropping, we still have a lot of water in the lake for summertime fun,” said Paul Pence, Dworshak natural resources manager. “All campgrounds and boat ramps are open for use, and the bass and kokanee fishing have been great.”

Water releases from Dworshak Reservoir, as required by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Columbia River System Biological Opinion (BiOp), help cool rising water temperature in the lower Snake River and maintain healthy conditions for migrating ESA-listed salmon and steelhead. Record high temperatures over the weekend and more hot weather conditions forecasted for the rest of the week prompted recent increases in water releases at Dworshak Dam and Reservoir near Orofino, Idaho.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers invites visitors to come use all of the facilities at Dworshak Dam and Reservoir but, it's important to remember to leave some things behind, according to Corps park and recreation officials.

Fireworks of any kind are prohibited in all the Corps' parks and on its lands across the District. Restrictions aren't intended to limit visitors' ability to celebrate but rather to help all visitors have an incident-free occasion.

The Corps and law enforcement officials will be out patrolling facilities all weekend, according to Deb Norton, lead park ranger for Dworshak Dam and Reservoir.

“If we find people lighting or in possession of fireworks on Corps property, we'll ask to them to remove the items immediately to resolve the situation. The very last thing we ever want to have to do is end up writing citations for someone.”

Ultimately, Corps recreation officials hope visitors will recognize and appreciate that safety is everybody's responsibility.

In addition, the reserving of mini-camp sites along the Dworshak Reservoir shoreline is prohibited. The early placement of camping equipment at mini-camp sites to ensure a spot for the July 4th weekend can result in the removal of the camping equipment or a citation.

Please enjoy the reservoir safely this weekend, by taking the following precautions:

• Changing weather conditions can create unsafe situations on open water. Know the weather and have a float plan.
• Keep life jackets on children while on or around the water.
• Don’t let small children out of your sight.
• Check the serviceability of your boat.
• Ensure proper fitting, accessible, and serviceable life vests are available for each occupant on your boat. Better yet, wear them.
• Before proceeding at higher speeds, familiarize yourself with the area you will be boating as there may be floating woody debris or rocks, stumps, and shallow areas not visible from the surface.
• When boating on the reservoir, please use caution because lake levels can change quickly.

The Dworshak Dam Visitor Center is open daily from 8:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m. The Visitor Center offers a variety of interpretive displays and movies about Dworshak and the history of the area, including the popular “Last of the Log Drives.” For more information, call the Dworshak Visitor Center at 208-476-1255 during normal business hours.


Public Affairs Office

Release no. 15-040