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Grand Coulee police cite angler near dam

FISHING – A Grand Coulee man has been cited by city police for fishing in an area that’s closed to public access immediately downstream from Grand Coulee Dam.

Water below the dam (flowing into the reservoir called Lake Rufus Woods) was opened to fishing last month for the first time since the 9-11 terrorist attacks, but a stretch of shore below the dam, marked by signs, remains closed for dam security.

Tyler Mellick was warned for trespassing in the closed area, but returned the next day to make a case for public access and was cited, said Capt. Chris Anderson, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife police supervisor.

“Working with the Colville Tribe, we opened this stretch of water for fishing, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t restrictions to the land and around structures,” he said.

“Mr. Mellick is a Bureau of Reclamation employee who, for some reason, is making this his cause. He’s gone to the sheriff, to WDFW, the media and last I heard he’s going to the U.S. Attorney General’s office. He’s on a mission.”

Anderson said the restricted area is clearly posted.

  • See the video Mellick's friends filmed from a distance of the arrest. 

Lake Roosevelt rising; nearing full pool

RIVERS — The level of Lake Roosevelt rose to an elevation of more than 1286 feet today and lake levels are expected to continue slowly rising over the next week into the 1288-1289 feet range by June 22.  Full pool is 1290 feet.

High levels at Lake Roosevelt reduce the beach area available for camping and picnicking. Levels drop in August for hydropower needs and providing flows for Columbia River salmon. This exposes more beaches making August prime time for campers on the 145-mile-long lake.

Dworshak Reservoir is at full pool. In this case, it provides the best access of the year to the mini-camps the Corps of Engineers has built along the rervoir near Orofino, Idaho.

Get links to river flows in this region at The Spokesman-Review Outdoors topics page.

Get daily Lake Roosevelt level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Check out this NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Lake Roosevelt levels spike higher, rivers dropping

RIVERS — The level of Lake Roosevelt rose to an elevation of about 1264 feet today and lake levels are expected to continue rising over the next week into the 1272-1276 range.

Lake inflows began increasing a week ago as the spring runoff began from the Columbia River's headwaters (see chart).

However, note that flows of southern tributaries were already subsiding. The Coeur d'Alene River has been dropping rapidly this week (see chart).

St. Joe River flows also are plummeting (see chart).

Get links to river flows in this region at The Spokesman-Review Outdoors topics page.

Get daily Lake Roosevelt level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Check out this NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Roosevelt lake levels heading higher

BOATING — The level of Lake Roosevelt was at an elevation of about 1254 feet today. Lake levels are expected to begin rising over the next week into the 1260 - 1265 range.

Inflows into the lake have begun to increase as the spring runoff is beginning.

The Bureau of Reclamation predicts the spring runoff to begin this weekend, and the weather forecast for a heat wave moving in seems to confirm that.

Until the runoff begins lake levels are expected remain fairly steady.

The drawdown is not nearly as severe as last year, as the chart shows.

Get daily lake level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Lake Roosevelt water levels holding steady

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1283.70 at 9 a.m. today (Sept. 28).

The lake level is expected to remain in the 1283-1284 range through next week.

These are only predictions are subject to change.

Get daily lake level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Lake Roosevelt boat fueling ends Sunday

BOATING — Lake Roosevelt's on-water fueling and minimal services will end for the season on Sunday (Sept. 30) at 5 p.m. at Keller Ferry and Seven Bays.

Info: (509) 725-7229 or (509) 647-5755.

Lake Roosevelt water levels trending higher for Labor Day

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1280.60 at 9 a.m. today following about three weeks of gradually lower levels.

Over the next week, the level of Lake Roosevelt will decline slightly and is expected to be between 1278.7 – 1279.70 on Aug. 31, according to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

Over the Labor Day weekend the level of the lake will rise slightly and is predicted to be in the 1280-1281 range.

These are only predictions are subject to change.

Get daily lake level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.
  

Lake Roosevelt trends to lower water levels

BOATING — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1284.60 at 8 a.m. today and levels will continue to gradually drop over the next week, according to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation at Grand Coulee Dam.

Predicted elevations by the end of next week are in the 1280-1281 range. (Full pool is 1290)

In order to meeting court ordered Biological Opinion targets and the Lake Roosevelt Incremental Storage target, the predicted elevation for August 31 is 1279.7. These are only predictions are subject to change with changing weather conditions, high power demand or other unforeseen power emergencies. 

Get daily lake level forecast by phone, updated daily at 3 p.m: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Roosevelt headed to full pool by by July 4

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt is about 1284 on June 22.

The lake is continuing to fill and spill is occurring over the drum gates at Grand Coulee Dam. The peak of the spring runoff is expected in the next two weeks. In addition, increased rainfall has resulted in high inflows into Lake Roosevelt. The predicted amount of rise in lake level is anticipated to be approximately 1 foot per day over the next week. The level of the lake is expected to be 1288 by June 30. The lake is expected to continue to rise .5-.75 feet per day, reaching the full pool elevation of 1290 on July 4.

Be cautious while recreating on Lake Roosevelt over the 4th of July holiday as the lake level will rise and a limited amount of beach will be available around the lake. Shoreline campers are advised to camp well away from the water’s edge.

For a daily lake level forecast call 1-800-824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day.

Lake Roosevelt levels continue upward trend

RESERVOIRS — The elevation of Lake Roosevelt was 1254.6 feet at 10 a.m. today.

The lake is continuing to fill. The predicted amount of rise is expected to be up to 1 foot a day over the next week. The level of the lake is expected to be in the 1265-1266 by the end of next week. 

Daily lake level forecast by phone: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Lake Roosevelt levels rising for holiday weekend

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1248.90 at 9 a.m. today as the lake continues to fill. The Bureau of Reclamation predicts the levels will continue to rise up to 1 foot a day over the next week.

Through the Memorial Day weekend the level of the lake is anticipated to be in the 1250-1253 range.

Daily lake level forecast by phone: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.


  

Lake Roosevelt levels looking up for Memorial Day

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1243.30 at 10 a.m. today as it continues to rise slowly.

“The prediction calls for the level of the lake to be in the 1245-1246 range for this weekend,” the Bureau of Reclamation says. “Next week the level of the lake is predicted to rise less than 1 foot per day resulting in the lakel level being in the 1250-1252 range over Memorial Day weekend.”

Daily lake level forecast by phone: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Lake Roosevelt refill levels off for time being

RESERVOIRS — After a fairly rapid rise in early May, the level of Lake Roosevelt was 1238 at 8 a.m. today and  predicted to stay at fairly stable levels for a while.

“Inflows have decreased over the last week, but are expected to increase slightly in the coming week,” the Bureau of Reclamation says. “At this time, the prediction is that the lake level will remain fairly stable over the weekend and rise slightly next week. At this time we anticipate a daily rise from 0-1/2 foot (6 inches). If the weather warms or there is increased precipitation, then there may be an increase in the daily rise of lake levels.

Daily lake level forecast by phone: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.


  

Lake Roosevelt levels rising up to 2 feet a day

RESERVOIRS — The spring runoff continues to allow operators to raise the water level of Lake Roosevelt.

 Over the next week, the level is predicted to rise 0.2  to 1 foot a day, the Bureau of Reclamation says.

 Spill through the outlet tubes on the face of the dam is occurring intermittently to control the rate of rise in Lake Roosevelt. “There is a large quantity of snowpack to the north of Lake Roosevelt and we want to ensure we have enough room in the lake for what is to come,” BuRec said in a release.

Daily lake level forecast by phone: (800) 824-4916.

Better yet, check out this new NOAA site with Roosevelt levels and a list of boat launching elevations on the same page.

Roosevelt levels, boat ramp access on 1 online chart

RESERVOIRS — As the water level in Lake Roosevelt continues to rise behind Grand Coulee Dam, more boat ramps are becoming viable again and anglers are becoming more versatile.

A nifty new NOAA hydrograph web page helps boaters with constantly updated information on lake levels, projected elevation changes and boat ramp launching levels.  It also shows when the lake is too low for running the Gifford and Keller Ferries.

“I recently added low-water impacts to the web page with the short term Lake Roosevelt forecast to help prevent more recreationists from hauling their boats out only to find their ramp high and dry,” said Katherine Rowden, the National Weather Service hydrologist who helped worked up the site. 

“The 'Low Flow' line on the hydrograph is when the Gifford Ferry stops running (first significant impact), but if you scroll down below the map, I've also listed all the boat ramps (per elevations on the Park Service's website) so folks can match up current and forecasted levels if they have a certain spot they like to launch from.

“The forecast is updated daily and incorporates planned reservoir operations.”

Lake Roosevelt drawdown turns corner; levels heading up

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1231 feet this morning.

The spring runoff has begun and the level of Lake Roosevelt has begun rising. Over the next week, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation predicts the level will rise 1-2 feet per day.

See the Roosevelt current lake level chart.

Check here for the minimum boat launch elevations to determine which are out of water.

Drawdown bares Roosevelt shores; driving not allowed

RESERVOIRS — From all indications, the Lake Roosevelt drawdown will continue into May with a possibility of lake elevations going to 1220 feet or lower. That's grim for anglers who will see another year of fish pouring over the dam and out of the reservoir.  Full pool is 1290 feet above sea level.

Expanses of bare shoreline will be showing in upcoming weeks. 

As lake level goes down, boat launch ramps will begin to close with all ramps being closed if the elevation goes below 1222 feet. 

In order to prevent archaeological and resource damage, driving on the drawdown is not allowed, Lake Roosvelt National Recreation Area officials say.

Lake Roosevelt levels continue dropping 1.5 feet a day

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1232.5 feet at noon today and will continue declining about 1.5 feet a day through the rest of the month to reach the flood control elevation of 1220.2. 

The plan could change, since there's still an above-average snowpack remaining in the upper Columbia River drainages.

 Inflows into Lake Roosevelt are expected to increase this week.

See the Roosevelt current lake level chart.

Spring Canyon and Seven Bays will be the ony sure bets for boat launching by Sunday.

Check here for the minimum boat launch elevations to determine which are out of water.

Lake Roosevelt levels dropping 1.5 feet a day

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1241.90 this moring and continuing to drop about 1.5 feet a day. That rate forecast to continue at least through the rest of the month to reach the flood control elevation of 1220.2.

The plan could change, since there's still an above-average snowpack remaining in the upper Columbia River drainages.

Next week the inflows into Lake Roosevelt are expected to increase.

See the Roosevelt current lake level chart.

Check here for the minimum boat launch elevations to determine which are out of water.

  

Lake Roosevelt levels continue downward trend

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was about 1244 feet this morning and the Bureau of Reclamation says it will continue dropping at the rate of 1.3 - 1.5 foot per day through the rest of April.

The flood control elevation for April 30 is 1220.2

This is not a good prescription for the comeback of trout and kokanee populations that were flushed out of the Lake Roosevelt system by deep drawdowns lat year. We may be looking at another bad year for fish.

Precipitation increased dramatically during March. The inflow forecast for Lake Roosevelt is 108% of average and the Dalles forecast is 111% of average.

For a daily forecast call (800) 824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day.

See the Roosevelt current lake level chart.

Check here for the minimum boat launch elevations to determine which are out of water.

Lake Roosevelt levels continue to drop

COLUMBIA RIVER — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1259.10 this morning, as it continues to drop about a foot a day, a trend likely to continue for the next week at least.

“With an increase in precipitation, the water supply forecast is increasing. As a result, the lake level is predicted to be approximately 1257 by March 31,” the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation reports today, noting that Lake Roosevelt is now being operated for flood control.

Based on the current forecast it is now estimated that the flood control elevation for Lake Roosevelt at the end of April will be in the 1220-1225 range.

The official forecast will be available during the week of April 9 and the actual flood control elevation for the end of April will be set.

Click here
for more detail concerning the forecast for the Columbia River System.

 For a daily forecast call (800) 824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day.
  

Lake Roosevelt levels continue downward trend

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1265.10 at 11 a.m.

The reservoir's elevation is expected to continue to decline over the next week. With an increase in precipitation, the water supply forecast appears to be increasing. As a result, the lake level is predicted to be approximately 1258 by March 31.

Lake Roosevelt is now being operated for flood control and is continuing to meet power demand, Hanford Reach flows and tailwater flows for chum below Bonneville Dam.

The March Water Forecast has the flood control elevations for Lake Roosevelt as follows:

  • March 31 – 1268.4 feet
  • April 15 – 1252.4 feet
  • April 30 – 1237.0 feet

For a forecast updated daily at 3 p.m., call (800) 824-4916.
  

Lake Roosevelt levels continue downward trend

RESERVOIRS — The elevation of Lake Roosevelt is slowly going down into the 1268-1264 feet range. Lake Roosevelt is now being operated for flood control and is continuing to meet power demand, Hanford Reach flows and tailwater flows for chum below Bonneville Dam.

The March Water Forecast has been released by the Bureau of Reclamation. Flood control elevations for Lake Roosevelt are as follows:

  • March 31 – 1268.4 feet
  • April 15 - 1252.4 feet
  • April 30 – 1237.0 feet


For a daily forecast call 800-824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day.
  

Lake Roosevelt levels begin downward trend

BOATING — The level of Lake Roosevelt was at elevation 1277.60 at 7 a.m. this mornining and headed for a slight downward trend next week to the 1276-1278 range.

The reservoir behind Grand Coulee Dam currently is being operated for power demand, Hanford Reach flows and to meet tailwater flows for chum below Bonneville Dam, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation reports.

The February Water Supply Forecast has been released and contains flood control elevations.

Flood control elevations are as follows:

  • February 31 – 1290 feet
  • March 31 – 1281.5 feet
  • April 30 – 1253.9 feet

Flood control elevations are the MAXIMUM elevations for Lake Roosevelt to be able to accommodate the anticipated spring runoff. Lake levels can be lower due to increased demand for power, supplementing downstream flows for fish, emergencies, etc. This is the current situation in which the flood control elevation is above the actual level of the lake. The forecast is based upon the weather.

The next flood control forecasts for March and April can and probably will change.

For a daily forecast call (800) 824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day.
  

Lake Roosevelt water levels trending down

COLUMBIA RIVER — The level of Lake Roosevelt was 1286 feet this morning. High pool is 1290.

For the next week, the level of Lake Roosevelt is anticipated to continuing dropping  gradually, the Bureau of Reclamation reports.

The predicted level of the lake by the end of next week should be about 1283.  The target elevation for the end of August is 1279 – 1280. Grand Coulee Dam is operating to meet power demand and target flows on the Columbia River at McNary.

For a daily forecast call 1-800-824-4916. This forecast is updated at 3 p.m. each day

Roosevelt at full pool; Coulee Dam still dumping water

RESERVOIRS — The level of Lake Roosevelt was inches below the full pool elevation of 1,290 feet today.  All boat ramps are in the water and life is good for reservoir goers.

For the next week, Lake Roosevelt will continue to be operated in the 1289-1290 range, the Bureau of Reclamation says.  Spill over the drumgates is expected to cease within the next week.   

For the beginning of August the lake is expected to begin drafting gradually to meet the Biological Opinion level of 1280 by the end of August.

For a daily forecast call (800) 824-4916.

Banks Lake drawdown to begin Aug. 1

LAKES — Anglers and campers will see new ground at Banks Lake this summer.

Starting Aug. 1, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation will lower Banks Lake by 30 feet to complete about $2 million worth of work at Dry Falls Dam and North Dam.

“It sounds like a lot, but we have a footprint on what it will look like,” said Stephanie Utter, manager at the Bureau's Ephrata office. “It's not as bad as it sounds. It's a pretty deep reservoir and it will still have a lot of water in it.”

The lake has had only a few major drawdowns: in the 1960s and later for milfoil control in the early to mid-1990s.

The drawdown will allow construction and upgrades for recreational facilities, too.

At Coulee City, for example, plans call for work on the swim beach area and expand boat moorage sites, she said.

Lake Roosevelt levels near full pool

RESERVOIRS — The elevation of Lake Roosevelt was nearling1,288 feet today. The lake is expected to continue filling and reach full pool of 1,290 feet around Monday, according to the Bureau of Reclamation.

Once full pool is reached, the lake will be operated in the 1288 -1290 range for the remainder of the week.  Lake Roosevelt continues to be operated for flood control.

All boat launches are in the water now. See the Lake Roosevelt minimum levels for boat launching chart, and keep watching the current water elevation

For a daily forecast by phone, call (800) 824-4916. Recording is updated at 3 p.m.

Roosevelt's rising water levels are floating up debris from the shoreline. Beware.

Roosevelt headed toward full pool; keep camp up from shore

COLUMBIA RIVER — Lake Roosevelt continues to fill rapidly and is expected to reach full pool - elev. 1,290 feet — on July 11, the Bureau of Reclamation says.

Meantine, miles of inviting sandy beaches are beckoning campers at Lake Roosevelt, but rapidly rising lake levels warrant caution when pitching tents.

Lake Roosevelt's level is above 1,280 feet today. 

Holiday campers note: The lake will continue to rise more than a foot a day through the 4th of July to around 1,285 on Tuesday.

Shoreline campers should make camp away from the water’s edge.  Boats should be securely anchored or tied securely to the shoreline to avoid having them drift out into the lake.

The rising lake levels have opened boat launching at most of Roosevelt's 22 public boat launches.

See the Lake Roosevelt minimum levels for boat launching chart, and keep watching the current water elevation

For a daily forecast by phone, call (800) 824-4916. Recording is updated at 3 p.m.

Roosevelt's rising water levels are floating up debris from the shoreline. Beware.

Roosevelt levels rising; keep tents up from shore

COLUMBIA RIVER — Miles of inviting sandy beaches are beckoning campers at Lake Roosevelt, but rapidly rising lake levels warrant caution when pitching tents.

Lake Roosevelt's level is at elevation 1,268 feet today, and it's expected to be up to about 1,280 feet on July 1, the Bureau of Reclamation says. 

Holiday campers note: The lake will continue to rise more than a foot a day through the 4th of July to around 1,285 on the 5th.

Shoreline campers should make camp away from the water’s edge.  Boats should be securely anchored or tied securely to the shoreline to avoid having them drift out into the lake.

The rising lake levels have opened boat launching at 15 of Roosevelt's 22 public boat launches.

See the Lake Roosevelt minimum levels for boat launching chart, and keep watching the current water elevation

For a daily forecast by phone, call (800) 824-4916. 

FISHING REPORT

  • Anglers are catching mostly smaller walleyes, but sizes are getting bigger, said Ray Bailey of RC Guide Service.
  • Spokane Arm water temp was 57 degrees on Thursday.
  • Roosevelt's rising water levels are floating up debris from the shoreline. Beware.