PRINEVILLE, OR -- Low water levels at the Prineville Reservoir are creating headaches for boaters.
Crook County Sheriff's Marine Deputy Rick Stoltenberg tells KBND News, "We're experiencing extremely low water levels; we normally don't see this low of water until mid- to late-September. People are showing up at the ramps expecting to launch, and right now, the only serviceable ramp is the one in the state park. The ramp at Powder House Cove and Jasper Point are so low that we're actually advising people not to launch because it's easy to damage your boat."
He recommends boaters use that state park launch instead of Jasper Point or Powder House, "The smaller boats are making it OK, but they're still running a risk. If they can't see the bottom or if they're not paying close attention and maybe lower their engine too early, they're going to end up losing a prop, which has happened to a couple of boaters already."
Levels are at the lowest Dep. Stoltenberg has seen at the reservoir in eight years.