Reclamation Announces Ririe Dam Road Will Remain Closed to Vehicles

Media Contact: Diana Cross, (208) 378-5020
Larry Hieb, (208) 678-0461 ext. 20

For Release: May 24, 2005

Concerns over public safety have merged in a decision by the Bureau of Reclamation to permanently close the gate providing vehicle access across Ririe Dam, located on Willow Creek about 6 miles southeast of Ririe, Idaho.

"Public safety is our primary concern, and at Ririe Dam we have a workable solution that permits public access for recreation," said Larry Hieb, Operations and Maintenance Technical Services Manager.

In previous years the top of the dam was open daily from late May to September for vehicular traffic.

Although large vehicles no longer have access to the top of the dam, the new gated solution allows access by pedestrians, bicyclists, and the small all-terrain vehicles used by recreational fishermen in the area.

Ririe Dam is an earth filled structure about 253 feet high. It was constructed in 1977 to provide flood protection and irrigation water to farms in southeastern Idaho.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier and the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the United States, with operations and facilities in the 17 Western States. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.