Lake Cd'A drawdown begins

Annual drawdown will bring lake to winter level

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An sailboat sits anchored off the North Idaho College beach Wednesday as waves roll onto the shoreline. Avista has began its annual fall drawdown of Lake Coeur d'Alene in preparation for the winter season.

COEUR d'ALENE - Avista began its annual fall drawdown of Lake Coeur d'Alene this week.

The lake will be gradually lowered about a foot from full pool by the end of September, and an additional 1 1/2 feet per month until reaching its winter level.

Property owners and boaters should take measures to secure docks and boats for the winter season during this period.

As part of Avista's FERC license to operate its Spokane River Hydroelectric Project, which includes Post Falls Dam, Avista is required to maintain the level of Coeur d'Alene Lake at summer full-pool elevation of 2,128 feet from as early as practical to the Tuesday after Labor Day.

The slow drawdown will increase flows of the Spokane River downstream of Post Falls, and will slightly decrease river levels between the lake and Post Falls bridge.

Spill gates at Post Falls Dam will not be opened for the drawdown, and the river should remain open for recreation until November; however, river users should be aware that water levels can fluctuate at any time depending upon weather and dam operations.

Avista has a 24-hour telephone information line that provides notification of anticipated elevation changes on Lake Coeur d'Alene, Lake Spokane and the Spokane River during the subsequent 24-hour and one-week periods. In Idaho, call (208) 769-1357; in Washington call (509) 495-8043.

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