Outdoors

Saturday's 'Dam Cruise’ offers rare chance to drive across Dworshak Dam

The spillways of Dworshak Dam churn out excess water  in April 2008. Lewiston Tribune (Barry Kough Lewiston Tribune)
The spillways of Dworshak Dam churn out excess water in April 2008. Lewiston Tribune (Barry Kough Lewiston Tribune)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is offering a unique opportunity see the view and drive across the top of Dworshak Dam – the tallest, straight axis, vertical, concrete dam in the United States – on Saturday (Sept. 17), from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“Dam Cruise 2011” begins at the Dworshak Dam Visitor Center. Read on to see the rules and restrictions:

  • Standard trucks, cars and motorcycles only
  • No external or saddle-style fuel tanks
  • No towed vehicles or trailers 
  • Drivers must present a current driver’s license and vehicle registration
  • Photo identification is required for all passengers 16 years of age and older
  • All vehicle occupants must wear a seat belt when the vehicle is moving
  • Passengers and driver may exit vehicle to sight-see and will be limited to 20 minutes on top of the dam to allow all visitors the chance to cruise the dam
  • All vehicles are subject to inspection 
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reserves the right to refuse entry

Visitors should be aware that suspension of dam crossings may be implemented at any time due to operational needs, maintenance or construction-related activities, or a change in security conditions at a Corps dam.

The Dworshak Dam Visitor Center will also be open that day from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The visitorcenter offers a variety of interpretive displays, water safety activities, nature-themed movies for families on Fridays and historical films, including the popular “Last of the Log Drives” and “Dworshak Dam Construction.”   

To get to the Dworshak Dam Visitor Center, drive five miles west of Orofino, Idaho, on state Highway 7; turn right onto Viewpoint Road and follow visitor center signs for about two miles; the visitor center is adjacent to the north dam abutment, located at North Fork Clearwater River Mile 2 on the north riverbank. 

For information regarding water levels, facilities access or recreation, call the visitor center at 208-476-1255. 




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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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