Boise River flow is nearing the magic number for the start of float season

Officials plan to lower the flow on the Boise River in the next few days to a level usually considered safe for floating, according to a news release from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The Corps, which controls water levels through the Lucky Peak Dam, said in the release late Tuesday that it would decrease the flow through the week. The river was flowing at 3,350 cubic feet per second on Tuesday. By Wednesday, the agency expected flows around 2750 cfs, decreasing even further to 1,550 cfs at the Glenwood Bridge gauge by Friday morning.

Traditionally, Ada County officials deem the Boise River safe for floating around 1,500 cfs. The float season generally opens at the start of summer and ends on Labor Day.

Ada County Parks and Waterways will announce the float season schedule on its Facebook page, the Corps said. The information also will be available on the Boise River Raft & Tube website. Floaters can rent equipment or sign up for shuttle service at Boise River Raft & Tube’s Barber Park location.

The Statesman has reached out to Ada County Parks and Waterways for more information on the anticipated start to float season.

Though there has been a minor delay this year, the start to float season will fall well within the range of normal. Last year, the season opened June 22. In 2017, after weeks of heavy snow, the season was delayed until July 29 – the latest opening on record.

In its news release, the Corps said the decrease in outflow is in response to a decrease in inflow above the dam.

“Currently, the Boise River reservoirs are at about 96% of capacity,” the release said. “As of June 25, the Boise River system of reservoirs has about 35,677 acre-feet of available storage space. A full supply of irrigation water is anticipated this summer.”

Related stories from Idaho Statesman