FRANKLIN – Franklin County is a popular area for fishing and boating in the spring for Utah residents. However, there is an interesting dilemma facing Utah and other out-of-state recreationalists wanting to boat and fish in Idaho through the month of May.
An agent from the Idaho COVID-19 Hotline said people have to quarantine themselves before they can take advantage of the waterways there.
“All people entering Idaho from out of state must quarantine themselves for 14 days before they are allowed to recreate in the Gem State,” said an Idaho COVID-19 agent. “If they bought their fishing license before April 4, the 14-day quarantine is waved.”
The restriction may be gone by June, she said.
Two southern Idaho reservoirs are popular destination spots for many Cache County sportsmen looking to get their boats in the water early. The world-wide pandemic may cause headaches for people wanting to play in Idaho.
Twin Lakes Canal Company, in Franklin County, want to open their reservoirs by May 15. There are fees associated with the use of the lake and campgrounds posted on their website.
“We generally open May 2,” said Twin Lakes Canal Company Secretary Judy Phillips. “We’ve moved the opening to May 15, depending what the governor does.”
The canal company will also open their Condie Reservoir to boats, only up to 10 HP watercraft, and there is no need to have the boat inspected at the station.
Winder Reservoir will also open, but watercraft is not allowed.
The Franklin, Idaho inspection station has been open since April 1.
“They pretty much operate from sun up to sun down in Franklin County,” said Stacy Tripp, the district administrator for Oneida Soil and Water District who oversees both stations. “We also oversee the Oneida County Inspection station which is open from 6 a.m. until midnight.”
Tripp said in 2019, 118,000 boats were inspected, 45 were found with quagga mussels.
“We don’t enforce any of the COVID-19 laws,” Tripp said. “We just concentrate on the agriculture and invasive species side of things.”