Bighorn Canyon Preparing For High Water Levels

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Date: July 6, 2011


Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area is preparing for high water levels on both Bighorn Lake and the Bighorn River throughout July. Please keep in mind the following predictions are subject to change due to weather conditions and water management decisions.

As you may well know the area has received record snow fall and rain this past winter and spring and as a result runoff is at record levels. Lake levels are expected to reach the upper end of the flood pool on Bighorn Lake. This will mean that many docks and campgrounds will be inaccessible until lake levels drop.

The lake level is expected to peak at about 3655 ft sometime around July 15th and may well continue at high levels throughout the month. The following is a status of campgrounds on Bighorn Lake:

There is the possibility of a closure of the Black Canyon campground due to flooded campsites starting this coming weekend of July 9th-10th, and continuing until further notice. Please check with a ranger or at the park visitor center for an update.

The docks and floating restrooms in Black Canyon will still be accessible.

Dayboard 9 visitor use area will most likely be accessible throughout this high water event.

Medicine Creek campground is closed.

River flows are currently at 8,500 cfs but are expected to increase after this weekend and may exceed 10,000 cfs for the entire month of July. Please use caution when launching and retrieving boats at the river launch sites.

Last updated: February 24, 2015

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area Headquarters Office
PO Box 7458

Fort Smith, MT 59035


(307) 548-5406

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