Grand slam for Hells Canyon wildlife watching

Posted by Roger Phillips on May 5, 2014 

Mountain goat in Hells Canyon

ROGER PHILLIPS

Spring brings out the game

There's never a more beautiful season than spring to see Hells Canyon. It's lush, green, and speckled with wildflowers. But the real star of the show is the wildlife. Over the weekend we spotted deer, elk, bighorn sheep and mountain goats. I don't know if that qualifies as a grand slam, but it works for me. I can't remember ever seeing all four of those species in one weekend. 

It's a long drive down to Hells Canyon Reservoir, which is one reason I tend to get shortstopped by Brownlee or Oxbow, but it's worth the extra miles. The canyon gets steeper and rockier. There's a waterfall on the Oregon side that slides off the mountain and disappears into a scree field. The fishing is pretty darn good, too. 

It's less developed than Brownlee and Oxbow. You won't find one of those full-service campsites like Woodhead Park, but it's still a great place to camp. 

It seems like all of Idaho is gorgeous in the spring, and it's hard to pick one place to and there are only so many weekends. But most important, get out and enjoy it.

Speaking of Hells Canyon, Motorists may experience delays crossing Hells Canyon Dam between 9 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. on May 7-8 due to maintenance being done on the dam’s spill gates.

Traffic will be stopped while crews and equipment are on the road over the dam. The road will be opened around noon while crews break for lunch. Vehicles will be allowed to cross periodically at other times as the work schedule allows. Flaggers will be on both the Idaho and Oregon sides of the dam to direct traffic while work is taking place.

Idaho Statesman is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service