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Camp at the Cove to close for repairs

Crooked River campground

   The Crooked River campground at the Cove Palisades State Park closes Sept. 30, for water and sewer systems upgrades, as well as campsite and restroom improvements. The campground will reopen early summer 2012.
   The three deluxe cabins, located about one mile from the main campground, will remain open during the closure, as will the Crooked River day-use boat ramp and the Upper Deschutes day-use boat ramp. The seasonal Deschutes campground is closed until May 1, 2012.
   The Crooked River campground is nearly 40 years old and the original water and sewer systems are in danger of failing. Work also includes adding sites accessible to people with disabilities, new restroom and shower buildings and adjusting campsite configurations to make it easier for oversized vehicles to use. The improvements include:
   . Upgrading water service and increasing electric service to 50/30/20 amp in all campsites.
   . Modifying four sites to be accessible for campers with disabilities.
   . Adding three new, energy-efficient, accessible restroom/shower buildings, including new sewer lines, drain fields and septic tanks.
   . Modifying 42 campsites to make it easier for campers to back in their vehicles.
   . Building a new, two-lane RV waste water dump station.
   . Building a new amphitheater to replace the existing one, in a location away from the overflow parking lot and RV dump station.
   The project's final budget is not yet set, but Oregon Parks and Recreation Department lottery fund dollars will fund the improvements.
   The first of two contracts for the work was awarded by the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission to Bill Booker Construction of Troutdale for $1.2 million to do the site improvements.
   A second contract will be presented to the commission at its November meeting to do the buildings.
   The Cove Palisades State Park sits along Lake Billy Chinook in Central Oregon. Tumalo State Park, 45 miles south, and Prineville Reservoir, 55 miles southeast, are the closest state parks that offer year-round camping.
   Private campgrounds are also available at the Central Oregon KOA east of Culver and the Mountain View RV Park in Metolius.