News Releases

Total solar eclipse will pass over Corps projects

Published Aug. 8, 2017
PORTLAND, Ore. – On Aug. 21, a total solar eclipse will pass over several U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ reservoirs and dams in western Oregon. The eclipse will cross the entire continent for the first time in 38 years, and people from all over the country will come to Oregon to witness this short-duration, yet impactful phenomenon.

While several sites will be prime viewing locations for the solar eclipse, Corps dams are critical federal facilities that will continue to operate as usual. All normal rules and regulations will remain in effect, and Corps operators may institute additional safety and security measures in anticipation of high visitation.

Visitors should expect intense demand for open areas in day use and campgrounds, as well as increased traffic at boat ramps and parking areas. Motorists may park only in designated areas, and cannot park on roadways or block traffic. Whether on land or water, visitors must obey all signs and safety regulations, and stay out of restricted areas. Visitors must not attempt to climb or circumvent fences, walls or other restrictive barriers, and boaters must stay out of the restricted zone near the dams, which are identified by a buoy line.

Open areas within and near the path of totality, including parks, campgrounds and recreation areas around Portland District projects, will experience congestion from the influx of visitors.

For safety and security reasons, the roads over some Portland District dams will be closed to public vehicle and pedestrian traffic. 
Detroit Dam and Lake: The road over Detroit Dam will be closed to the public from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the day of the eclipse. The overlook area adjacent to the dam off Highway 22 will be closed from 1 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 20 to 1 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 21. 
Green Peter Dam and Reservoir: The road over Green Peter Dam, including Billings Park on the east side of the dam, will be closed to the public from 4 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 20 to 1 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 21. 
Cougar Dam and Reservoir: The road over Cougar Dam is currently closed due to ongoing construction, and it will remain closed through the eclipse.

Other Portland District projects within and close to the path of totality include: 
Foster Dam and Reservoir, 
Blue River Dam and Reservoir,
Cougar Dam and Reservoir,
Dexter Dam and Reservoir,
Fall Creek Dam and Reservoir,
Fern Ridge Dam and Reservoir,
Lookout Point Dam and Reservoir,
Hills Creek Dam and Reservoir,
Cottage Grove Dam and Reservoir,
Dorena Dam and Reservoir,
Bonneville Lock and Dam,
The Dalles Lock and Dam
John Day Lock and Dam, and
Willow Creek Dam.

Many of the recreation areas at these Portland District projects are managed by Corps of Engineers partners. For information on specific sites, please visit the Portland District recreation webpage at

Linn County Parks: 
Lane County Parks: 
Oregon State Parks: 
Washington State Parks: 

Portland District recreation
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Portland District manages 18 reservoirs and offers recreation at 135 parks on the water within the state of Oregon. More than 10 million people visit our locations annually to experience the diverse range of outdoor activities we offer to people of all ages. For more information on Portland District’s recreation opportunities, visit

Tom Conning

Release no. 17-028

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