Walk the Basin
Map (Tour)
1-Pend Oreille
2-LSR Headwaters
3-Fish of the LSR
4-Mt. Spokane
5-LSR Tributaries
7-Scenic Corridor
8-City of Deer Park
11-Spokane Valley
12-Hangman Creek
13-Baseflows to LSR


Seven dams are operated along the Spokane River between Coeur d'Alene Lake in Idaho and 30 miles upstream of the confluence with the Columbia River. All of these dams are operated by Avista Utilities except for the Upriver Dam that is operated by the City of Spokane.

Post Falls Dams (3) - in Idaho
Upriver Dam - in WRIA 57
Upper Falls Dam - in WRIA 57
Monroe Street Dam - in WRIA 57
Nine Mile Dam - in WRIA 54
Long lake Dam - in WRIA 54
Little Falls Dam – in WRIA 54

Coeur d'Alene Lake is a naturally occurring lake whose impoundment was increased by the construction in 1906 of Post Falls dam. All of the dams on the Spokane River within WRIA 57 are run-of-the-river, which means that there are no reservoirs and the power generated is directly a function of the natural flows of the river.

Avista's origin springs from the construction of the Monroe Street Hydroelectric Development in 1889. Today, Monroe Street and its four sister hydroelectric developments in the Spokane River Project provide the region with an average of 100 MW of electric energy, enough to meet the electrical needs of about 65,000 homes.

The Spokane River Project was first licensed in 1972. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) refers to the hydroelectric facilities subject to a single license as a "Project," and gives each project a unique number. The Spokane River Project is FERC No. 2545. The license tells Avista how they can operate the developments and what protection, mitigation and enhancement measures (PM&Es) are needed to address the project's ongoing impacts. The current license expires in 2007, and a new application was submitted at the end of July 2005. Relicensing is about evaluating the impacts of the project and developing PM&Es to address those impacts as the project continues to operate.


Photo Source: Avista Utilities

Contact: Reanette Boese, Spokane County Water Resources