OLYMPIA - A popular boat ramp in Wahkiakum County used by anglers fishing near the mouth of the Columbia River will be closed for repairs three days during the first week in September.
The Oneida boat ramp, owned and maintained by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) on the Deep River, will be closed for use Sept. 3-5.
Sandra Jonker, regional WDFW wildlife manager, said work is urgently needed to reinforce the fractured boat ramp and replace the dilapidated floating dock at the site. During the three-day closure, a work crew will install interlocking concrete blocks to secure the ramp and clear the way for the installation of a new float and pilings.
"We're waiting to do this work until the Buoy 10 chinook season is over, but we really can't push this project any later in the year," Jonker said. "We regret any inconvenience this may cause anglers and other boaters."
Jonker said the timing of the ramp closure is largely determined by the optimal low tide schedule during the authorized work window for the project.
WDFW also plans to close the ramp for one or two additional days later in September to install the new dock and pilings, but has not yet scheduled a date, Jonker said. On days when the ramp is closed, she suggests anglers use the boat ramps in Chinook or Astoria to launch their boats.
Jonker noted that the ramp repair and dock replacement are part of a larger effort to improve safety and general conditions at the site, which WDFW acquired in 2011 to preserve public access to the water. Other improvements planned in September include paving and striping the main parking lot, laying gravel on the overflow lot, and installing new toilets.