News Releases

Winter recreational lock schedule begins Sept. 15 on Lower Columbia

Published Sept. 13, 2022

PORTLAND, Ore. – Motorized recreational boaters who need to pass through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps’) three lower Columbia River dams must do so during daylight hours only, upon request, Sept. 15 through May 14, 2023.

Commercial vessels will have lockage priority over recreational users, but lock operators may use their discretion to allow recreational vessels to lock through with commercial craft.

This change impacts Bonneville, The Dalles and John Day dams. This is an annual, regularly scheduled part of operations during the winter season.

The Corps requests that recreational vessels contact the navigation lock control room at least 30 minutes prior to their arrival at the lock. Vessel owners/operators requesting lockage must contact the lock operator on duty using Marine Channel 14 or commercial telephone. This will allow the control room to prepare for their transit and will provide vessel operators with general timeframes for their lockage. Control room contact information is:

  • Bonneville Lock and Dam (river mile 145): 541-374-8323
  • The Dalles Lock and Dam (river mile 191): 541-506-8211
  • John Day Lock and Dam (river mile 216): 541-298-9712

All vessel owners/operators lock through at their own risk. A personal flotation device is required for every member on board the vessel, throughout the duration of the lockage. Follow the directions of the lock operator when using the locks or operating in the vicinity of the locks. The lock operator has final authority on the suitability of a craft for lockage. Please refer to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Safe Lockage Policy for Recreational Craft on the Columbia and Snake Rivers for additional safety requirements.

Safety guidelines for recreational vessels on Columbia, Snake rivers:  

The Columbia-Snake inland navigation system, which stretches 360 miles from Portland, Oregon, to Lewiston, Idaho, provides critical benefits to business and the public. Approximately 9 million tons of cargo valued at over $3 billion is barged on the Columbia-Snake river system annually. The navigation system contributes jobs, facilitates import and export trade, and benefits the economy, environment, and quality of life in the Pacific Northwest.

– 30 –

Chris Gaylord

Release no. 22-048

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