Outdoors

Lake Coeur d'Alene drawdown has begun

Sunset over Lake Coeur d'Alene's Wolf Lodge Bay from the Mineral Ridge hiking trail. (Linda Lantzy / Idaho Scenic Images)
Sunset over Lake Coeur d'Alene's Wolf Lodge Bay from the Mineral Ridge hiking trail. (Linda Lantzy / Idaho Scenic Images)

LAKES — Avista began the annual fall drawdown of Lake Coeur d’Alene on Tuesday.

The lake will be gradually lowered approximately a foot from full pool by the end of September, and an additional 1½ feet per month thereafter until reaching its winter level. Property owners and boaters should take measures to secure docks and boats for the winter season during this period.

As part of Avista’s FERC license to operate its Spokane River Hydroelectric Project, which includes Post Falls Dam, Avista is required to maintain the level of Coeur d’Alene Lake at summer full-pool elevation of 2,128 feet from as early as practical in the spring until the Tuesday after Labor Day.

The slow drawdown will increase flows of the Spokane River downstream of Post Falls, and will slightly decrease river levels between the lake and Post Falls bridge. Spill gates at Post Falls Dam will not be opened for the drawdown, and the river should remain open for recreation until November; however, river users should be aware that water levels can fluctuate at any time depending upon weather and dam operations.

Avista has a 24-hour telephone information line that provides notification of anticipated elevation changes on Lake Coeur d’Alene, Lake Spokane and the Spokane River during the subsequent 24-hour and one-week periods. In Idaho, call (208) 769-1357; in Washington call (509) 495-8043.




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Rich Landers

Rich Landers’ Outdoors blog


Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.


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