Snake River

drought, field, agriculture
Molly Messick / Boise State Public Radio

Growers of sugar beets and potatoes in eight counties along southern Idaho's Snake River could be in jeopardy after a fish hatchery's complaint it isn't getting its fair share of water.

Idaho Department of Water Resources' director Gary Spackman signed an order Wednesday telling 2,300 water-right holders they'll have to shut down irrigation if they can't reach a compromise with Rangen Inc, a Hagerman-based fish farm.

snake river, canyon
ChadH / Flickr Creative Commons

Jerome County commissioners in south-central Idaho have approved a permit for a rocket-powered jump of the Snake River Canyon the weekend before another daredevil's attempt.

The Times-News reports that commissioners approved the plan for Scott Record and Scott Traux to launch the rocket Sept. 1 from private land in Jerome County to private land in Twin Falls County.

That's a week ahead of the planned attempt by Texas motorcycle stuntman Big Ed Beckley.

tilapia
MHaze / Flickr Creative Commons

A Twin Falls fish and frog farm has agreed to pay a $25,000 fine as part to settle a case over illegal discharging of phosphorus into the Snake River.

The Environmental Protection Agency announced the settlement Tuesday with McCollum Enterprises, Limited Partnership, which operates the Canyon Springs Fish Farm.

Regulators accused the company of more than 550 violations of its discharge permit between June 2008 and March 2012.

snake river, canyon
ChadH / Flickr Creative Commons

Evel Knievel's 1974 Snake River jump site and 425 acres along the Snake River Canyon are now part of the Twin Falls city limits.

The city council on Monday unanimously approved annexing the land, which includes the Centennial Trail and the city gun range.

The city obtained the property in a 2012 land swap. With daredevils seeking to use the Knievel site to launch a rocket across the canyon, city officials want to make sure they have full jurisdiction over the site.

BigEdBeckley.net

Idaho schools will get $943,000 from a Texas stuntman, in return, the stuntman has purchased the right to jump the Snake River Canyon.

The bid made by "Big" Ed Beckley in a public auction last week is due to the state of Idaho Friday afternoon. He'll wire the money to the state.

Beckley is a 63-year-old who's been jumping motorcycles since the mid 1970s.  At 285 lbs. he bills himself as the world's largest motorcycle jumper. 

Brian Thom and Ardele Hanson

Four years ago, Brian Thom, the Episcopal Bishop of Idaho, came up with a plan to ask Ardele Hanson to marry him.  He wanted to recreate a special moment by kayaking up the Snake River to a lush, green island they had visited that summer. 

In his pocket was an engagement gift, a heart-shaped necklace.  The couple sat down in the StoryCorps booth in Boise to talk about that day.

Frank Kovalchek / Flickr Creative Commons

If you were to go to the banks of the Snake River downstream of Milner Dam near Burley, you wouldn’t see much more than a trickle of water. That’s because the federal Bureau of Reclamation shut off the river flow on June 4.

For at least 25 miles, there isn’t enough water for a kayaker to paddle through. Idaho Power runs the hydroelectric plant at the dam, and says the zero flow will impact its operations through late July.  

Greg Harness / Flickr Creative Commons

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [EPA] has reached a settlement agreement with Jerome Cheese Company that would have the cheesemaker paying more than $300,000 in fines for dumping too many pollutants into the Snake River.

KelleyTravel / Flickr

A new study says the nation’s aquifers are shrinking at an alarming rate The problem is not as bad in the Northwest, thanks to an abundance of rivers and streams. But even here, aquifers are shrinking.

Think of all the water in Lake Erie. Then double it. That’s how much water has drained since 1900 from aquifers in the U.S. When these underground water bodies shrink, it means less water for cities, farms and streams.

Idaho Public Television

The U.S. Army Corp of Engineers wants to dredge a deeper channel for barges in the waters behind southeastern Washington’s Lower Granite Dam. Idaho’s Port of Lewiston says the work is important to keep the local economy moving. But some environmental groups opposed to the plan.

Damming the lower Snake River in southeastern Washington has turned the nearby town of Lewiston, Idaho into the Northwest’s most inland seaport. But the build-up of sediment is making the water too shallow for barges to navigate the waters behind the Lower Granite Dam.

From the Kyle McGrady collection, courtesy of Bob McGrady

Early in the last century, people living in Hells Canyon didn't have much contact with the outside world.  Their lifeline were  the mail boats that braved the challenging Snake River.  Former Lewis Clark State College professor Carole Simon-Smolinski has been studying Hells Canyon. She'll talk about the mail boat tradition tonight in Boise.  She says the boats started running around 100 years ago.

Flood Watch Near Salmon In Effect After Frigid Temps

Jan 23, 2013
Andrew McFarlane / Flickr Creative Commons

Ice jams on the Salmon River are causing flooding concerns. The National Weather Service reports continued sub-zero temperatures in Lemhi County. The cold weather could mean the river will flood low-lying areas this week.    

David Evetts is with the U.S. Geological Survey in Idaho. He says there is one ice jam north and one south of Salmon. Evetts says it’s common for ice jams to form in the area, but flooding isn’t always the end result.

Judge Redden Talks Salmon Case

Apr 25, 2012
Aaron Kunz / Earthfix

A federal judge who has ruled for more than a decade on how to save Columbia and Snake River salmon says four dams on the Lower Snake River should be torn down.

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