Current Conditions

Large volumes of water flow out the gates of the Gavins Point Dam.
Be cautious if you plan to be on the river. Depending on releases from Gavins Point Dam, the river can flow from 3 to 5 miles per hour.

NPS Photo.

When traveling the river please be aware of snags, stumps, sandbars, and floating debris. Always wear a life vest (personal floatation device) when on the river. Swimming in the river is discouraged because of unpredictable currents.




Coronavirus at the Missouri National Recreational River

The National Park Service (NPS) encourages people who choose to visit the Missouri National Recreational River and other national parks during this pandemic to adhere to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local public health authorities to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. As services are limited, the NPS urges visitors to continue to practice Leave No Trace principles to keep outdoor spaces safe and healthy. See more information at


39 Mile Reach - Fort Randall Dam to Running Water, SD

The 39-mile reach begins immediately downstream from Fort Randall Dam at Pickstown, South Dakota, and continues to Running Water, South Dakota. Flows on this reach are influenced by controlled releases from Fort Randall Dam. The water discharge rate can change hourly. The normal rate of flow is 3 to 5 mph.


59-Mile Reach - Gavins Point Dam to Ponca State Park

The 59-mile reach stretches from about one mile below Gavins Point Dam to Nebraska's Ponca State Park. Gavins Point Dam regulates water flow on this reach of the river. The river channel follows a winding course. There are many snags and sandbars.

Note: 16,000 CFS indicates low water, over 40,000 indicates very high water.


Additional Information

Current and Predicted River Conditions in the Middle Missouri River Basin from the National Weather Service.
Missouri River Basin Water Management Division lists current condition and forecast for the entire Missouri River Basin.
Missouri River Water Information Portal for entire reach of the Missouri River from Montana to Missouri.
National Water Information System USGS water data for the United States.

Last updated: September 9, 2020

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

508 East 2nd Street
Yankton, SD 57078


605-665-0209 x21

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