Bridge inspection expected to reduce Snake River water levels near Bliss starting next week

Idaho Power will reduce flows to enable divers to inspect the bridge southwest of Bliss, both above and below the waterline.
Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 12:51 PM MDT
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BLISS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — Flows in the section of the Snake River below Lower Salmon Falls Dam near Bliss will bump up and then drop substantially early next week as the Idaho Transportation Department performs a routine structural inspection of Shoestring Bridge.

The operation will also require brief closures at river access points in the area, including the Lower Salmon boat launch and raft slide and the Relish Beach whitewater takeout. Signs will be posted, and Idaho Power recreation staff will be on hand to alert boaters.

Idaho Power will increase flows at its Lower Salmon project from about 5,500 cubic feet per second (cfs) to around 8,200 cfs beginning at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27.

Flows will begin to drop by about 8 p.m. that evening. Flows below the Bliss Dam downstream will increase from 7,200 cfs to 9,800 cfs starting at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday and begin dropping around 10 p.m.

After that, Idaho Power will reduce flows to enable divers to inspect the bridge southwest of Bliss both above and below the waterline.

Starting around 6:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28, flows from Salmon Falls Dam will drop to approximately 1,800 cfs. The water volume between the dam and the bridge increases as other sources enter the river, so flows at Shoestring Bridge will be around 3,200 cfs during the drawdown.

Flows below Bliss Dam will be lowered from 8:30 a.m.–3 p.m. and will drop to as low as 4,800 cfs.

After the bridge inspection is complete, flows will return to normal, starting around 10:30 a.m. at Lower Salmon and 3:30 p.m. at Bliss.

Snake River water levels
Snake River water levels(KMVT-NEWS)