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Riverhurst Ferry returns to action after months-long delay to season start

Ferry officially opened for business on Thursday afternoon, drastically shortening travel for area producers
The Riverhurst Ferry is unable to begin safe operations
The Riverhurst Ferry returned to duty on Thursday.

The Riverhurst Ferry is back in action.

After seeing the start of the free service for crossing Lake Diefenbaker delayed by months due to low water levels, the ferry finally began transporting vehicles on Thursday afternoon.

Traditionally, the ferry opens as soon as ice has cleared from the lake, but low water levels and increasing silt and sediment deposits on the Riverhurst side of the crossing led to the delay.

The ferry can provide passage for up to 15 cars at a time, or about 30,000 vehicles annually.

When the ferry is down, the increase in travel is often staggering for the many producers in the area -- some of whom could see parts of their land on the other side of the lake.

As an example, a trip from Riverhurst to Greenbrier near the crossing would take around 35 minutes when the ferry is operational. The same trip going around Lake Diefenbaker is a journey of nearly two hours.

Recent rainfall in B.C. and Alberta has seen the water levels rise substantially in recent weeks, leading to the Ministry of Highways deciding to put the crossing back in play.

For more on the Riverhurst Ferry shutdown, you can click right here.