Boaters heading to Brownlee or Oxbow reservoirs in Hells Canyon should be aware of recent changes that will impact access to the water, including the temporary closure of the main boat ramp at Woodhead Park.
Floating barriers have been installed to prevent boats from getting within 600 feet (ft.) of Brownlee Dam on the upstream side and within 1,000 ft. on the downstream side, in Oxbow Reservoir. These restrictions do not limit bank access to either reservoir. The buoys have been installed to improve security and safety around the dam and power plant as Idaho Power complies with federal standards for critical energy infrastructure.
In addition, the new boat ramp at Woodhead Park will be closed until March 1 while a contractor removes equipment and materials. The old boat ramp on the south side of the parking lot remains open. Visitors should use caution due to the increased contractor activity in the area.
While the reservoir level has been lowered in preparation for spring flood control, the boat launch at the Moonshine Mine Recreation Area near Richland, Oregon, remains available. Updated Brownlee water levels are available on Idaho Power’s website.