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Economic and dam related articles

Dworshak Reservoir on Track for
Early Fill as Snowpack Recedes

by Mia Carlson
Daily Fly, June 20, 2017

Dworshak Dam inundated the largest steelhead habitat in the world.  Downstream is now the largets steelhead hatchery facility in the world. AHSAKHA, ID - Receding snowpack in the Clearwater sub-basin has prompted Dworshak Reservoir managers to shift their focus from seasonal flood-risk-management to recreation-fill. The US Army Corps of Engineers says during a snow line flight of the North Fork Clearwater Basin last week, reservoir managers observed a firm snow line at or above 6,000 feet in the basin -- about 4%, or less, of snow cover across the sub-basin.

"That significant reduction in snowpack, led managers to reduce discharges from Dworshak Dam and begin refilling the reservoir on Thursday. The reservoir is already within 1 feet of full-pool elevation (1600 feet)," according to a press release.


Current inflow estimates indicate the reservoir will reach full-pool elevation on or about June 21 -- about 10 days earlier before this year's July 1 target. Reservoir managers plan to maintain the reservoir elevation within the top foot of full-pool until July 6, or until cold flow augmentation from Dworshak Reservoir is required for ESA-listed aquatic species temperature control.

Dworshak's recreation and maintenance crews have prepared lakeshore recreation sites and recreation docks for visitors and campers. Dent campground is open and available for reservations. The campground usually fills up for holiday weekends, so park managers recommend reserving sites early by calling 1-877-444-6777 or online at

"Conditions are already great for visitors – all boat ramps are open, the reservoir is only about 1 feet from full, making access to shoreline campsites easy for this time of year," said Paul Pence, Dworshak Natural Resources Manager. "Lots of bass fishermen have been heavily using the lake and coming back to shore with smiles and reports of some large fish being caught. Kokanee fishing has been hot and then not. Fishermen have been finding scattered schools of good-sized fish near the Dent and Magnus Bay areas."

More information about all recreation opportunities at Dworshak can be found at or call the Dworshak Visitor Center at 208-476-1255.

"Like" Dworshak's Facebook page to get in on the latest activities happening at the dam and reservoir

A fact sheet about Dworshak Reservoir operations is available on the Walla Walla District website at

Mia Carlson
Dworshak Reservoir on Track for Early Fill as Snowpack Recedes
Daily Fly, June 20, 2017

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