Idaho Power provides recreational flows through the Milner reach of the Snake River for four weekend days each year when inflow to the Milner project is over 10,000 cubic feet per second above irrigation needs. This includes the Memorial Day holiday. The flows will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (MDT), if sufficient water is available. This is one of our requirements under federal licenses to operate our hydroelectric projects.
Forecasts are based on Snake River flow information from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. Flows below Milner Dam and through the power plant depend on having water above irrigation needs.
Other factors include:
- Snow pack
- Flood control
- Flow releases to support salmon and steelhead
For the latest available flow forecasts, call 1-800-422-3143.
If water is available, submit a Milner Whitewater Release Request online, or call us toll-free at 1-800-422-3143 (option 2) to request a whitewater release date for boating below Milner Dam. Provide the following information:
- your first and last name
- the date and time you want to boat
- the number of people in your group
Important Information About Whitewater Releases
- Make your release request before 3 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time (MDT) the Friday before the requested weekend day.
- If enough water is available and the request includes at least two boaters, the request will be granted.
- Water will be released from the dam when at least two boaters have checked in at the Milner Power Plant on the requested release day.
- Confirm your requested release by 5 p.m. (MDT) the Friday before the requested date to make sure flow levels are available. You may do this online, or by calling 1-800-422-3143.
- Requested releases will be scheduled only if conditions allow.
- If enough water is available, but no boaters checked in or called to cancel the release, the request will be counted as one release day.
Recommended Skill Levels
The 1.6-mile stretch of river between the dam and the power plant is a Class V-level rapid. It is recommended for experts only.
The 5.5-mile stretch of river downstream from the power plant to Star Falls is a potential Class II- or Class III-level rapid. This section is recommended for intermediate boaters when flows exceed 5,000 cfs. No flow release request is needed for this section of river.
The Milner Hydroelectric Project is located on a stretch of the Snake River popular with kayakers, whitewater rafters and boaters. View a trail map.
Flow conditions on other sections of the Snake River can be found on these websites:
Snake River Milner Mile 2009
Snake River Milner Mile 2009 – video courtesy of Brian Ward, Mike Leeds Photography.
Milner Dam was built in the early 1900s for irrigation. Idaho Power and Milner Dam, Inc. improved the dam and added a hydroelectric power plant in 1992. Find information about Milner’s Recreation Facilities.