HELLS CANYON, Idaho (KLIX) – Boaters visiting Brownlee Reservoir will soon be able to launch their craft without worry once a deep-water boat ramp is completed at the site this spring.

The 75-foot Moonshine Mine Boat Ramp is slated to open this spring on the Brownlee Reservoir in Hells Canyon, according to information from Idaho Power, about 13 miles upstream from the town of Richland. Once complete, reservoir users will be able to launch their craft from the ramp even when water is low.

The 20-acre Moonshine Mine project includes 44 parking spaces, two vault toilets, six campsites, and an Idaho Power maintenance warehouse, according to the utility company.

The project includes more than a decade of work by Idaho Power’s recreation staff that has been working with local, state and federal officials. It is part of the company’s Hells Canyon relicensing project.

“One of the biggest challenges with this is obviously the location,” Project Engineer Bill Lynch said in an Idaho Power video about the project. “It’s definitely, you know in the middle of nowhere by most people’s standard.”

The ramp is being built on the Oregon side of the reservoir.

“The size of the site is quite substantial as well,” Lynch said. “It’s a 20-acre site and there’s a lot of elevation change between the road access and the river. So just a lot of earth-moving activities.”

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