Devil’s Corral Water Rights

Devil’s Corral Water Rights

Current Status:

Date Filed:
Jun 14, 2018

Case Title:
In the Matter of Application for Permit

Staff attorney(s):
Bryan Hurlbutt


Committee for Idaho’s High Desert

Idaho Conservation League

To Protect:

Snake River
Fish Habitat
Clean Water

Date won/settled:
January 23, 2020


Case Information:

January 23, 2020 — Facing mounting pressure in our water right protest, the development company Devil’s Corral backed down and asked to withdraw its old 1980s water right application. On January 23, 2020, the Idaho Department of Water Resources dismissed the application, ending Devil’s Corral’s attempts to circumvent Idaho water law and avoid public involvement. Devils Corral now faces major hurdles to obtaining a water right for its proposed housing and recreation development in the Snake River canyon upstream of Shoshone Falls. Because water on the Snake River is already overtapped, there is a moratorium on new consumptive water rights in southern Idaho, and minimum stream flows water rights are in place to protect the spring in Devil’s Corral canyon. Furthermore, a new water right application would have to go through the normal process, giving all those who care about Devils Corral an opportunity to file protests.

June 14, 2018 — In collaboration with the Idaho Conservation League (ICL), CIHD filed a successful Motion for Summary Judgment, and the Idaho Department of Water Resources rejected Devil’s Corral LLC’s attempt to game the system. Now, Devil’s Corral LLC must amend the old water right application if it wishes to move forward, the application’s “priority date” will be advanced, and the public will be given notice and a fair opportunity to get involved.strong>February 27, 2018 – Advocates for the West represents the Committee for Idaho’s High Desert (CIHD) in this water right protest. Devil’s Corral Spring is a 3/4-mile long river that flows into the Snake River just upstream of Shoshone Falls. Fed by the Snake River Plain Aquifer, Devil’s Corral Spring is clean and free flowing refuge for fish living in the highly degraded mid-Snake River. Devil’s Corral LLC wants to build a residential development, event center, and recreation facilities with zip lines and waterslides in the Snake River canyon northeast of Twin Falls. As part of its development plan, Devil’s Corral LLC seeks a water right for the entire flow of the Spring so it can construct numerous dams and stocked fishing ponds throughout Devil’s Corral.

Instead of applying for a new water right, Devil’s Corral LLC tried to piggyback on an old, languishing water right application from the early 1980s to avoid public involvement and circumvent requirements of current Idaho water law.

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