On This Day in History…
On July 25, 1996, Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt added 10 miles of the Wallowa River in northeastern Oregon to the National Wild & Scenic Rivers System. The Wallowa became the 160th—and Oregon’s 46th—river to be designated as wild and scenic. The Wallowa joined Joseph Creek and the Minam, Lostine, Wenaha and the Grande Ronde Rivers as designated wild and scenic rivers within the Grande Ronde Basin. Only the Klamath and Smith River Systems in California, and the Deschutes in Oregon, are comparable in protection of a complete river system.
From the confluence of the Minam and Wallowa Rivers at Minam, Oregon, downstream to its confluence with the Grande Ronde, this river is the gateway to the Wild and Scenic Grande Ronde River. The Wallowa offers incredible fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and floatboating, as well as a state park for camping. The primary launch site for the Wallowa and Grande Ronde corridors, as well as the BLM public contact station, are located on state lands at Minam.