Wanapum Dam in Trouble???

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by cmann886, Mar 1, 2014.

  1. Does it make any of you re-think fishing Nunally/Lenice?
  2. [quote="cmann886, post: 913852, member:
    I lived in southern Idaho when the Teton Dam breached. The results were devastating for those in the path of the flood...and that was a small dam.

    I learned to be a carpenter rebuilding Rexburg, Ririe, Sugar City, etc. Fortunately, I was living upriver from the dam when it went.

  3. Nunnally and Lenice are upslope from Wanapum, so no worries there. And Wanapum is upstream of Priest Rapids, so PR can also be drawn down if necessary to partially re-regulate any sudden breach at Wanapum. If the condition requires a major draw down for very long, this does not bode well for the spring smolt out-migration. The reservoirs have to be near full pool for smolt bypass facilities to function and to provide spill for smolt passage. Under a major draw down condition, all water goes through the turbines. This could get exciting for Grant PUD if the spring runoff produces high flows.

  4. Eh. Just take it out. Problem solved :)
    jstlhd, Kent Lufkin and Derek Young like this.
  5. Salmo G.....talk more about the downstream migration of smolts through that dam. Be interested in knowing what options the PUD has for the downstream migration mitigation IF the dam remains below full pool.

    David.....Bad news for the city of Portland. Looks like power rates will be going up in Oregon.. Oh well, they needed to learn how to conserve energy anyway.
    David Dalan likes this.

  6. Everything is getting more expensive anyway. PPNL is constantly trying for double digit rate hikes, as it is.

    So I and Portland are pooched anyway. I'm going to install solar. Or build my own reactor. Or burn dung.

    At least I can fish. It'll be cheaper than staying home with the lights and heat on.
    Kent Lufkin likes this.
  7. The conspiracy theorist in me says the timing of this thread with opening day is suspect 1146.gif
  8. Taking out a large dam is not an easy prospect and the impacts are also damaging. Down stream silting has its own negative impacts.

  9. It'll pass, rivers used to manage themselves just fine. The dam will be a problem as long as it is there.
  10. Vladimir,

    I don't know. Wanapum is a run of river dam and project and intended to operate with the pool elevation within a fairly narrow range. I don't know if the dam has an ROV (river outlet valve), not all do. I don't know if it can be drained below the penstock invert. I'll check with my engineer co-worker Monday. He works a on the mid-C projects and knows who to ask for answers.

  11. Anybody fishing downstream of the dam.... BE CAREFUL! They're drawing it down fast, and are issuing flash flood warnings for all of western grant county. Not just the mainstem Columbia, but creeks, gullys, any drainage lower than the dam is susceptible(they're warning). So if you're fishing certain spring creeks, watch your six.
    McNasty likes this.
  12. crossing over at vantage today it was amazing to see how low the water was. Interesting to see that much of some of those flats exposed.
  13. A 32 foot crack is significant. I heard they are drawing it down quickly to relieve the pressure but to take it out would cost millions of tax payers' money. Probably better to survey and repair if possible before anyone starts talking about removal. Look how long it has taken on the Elwa and that stretch of the Columbia is twenty times greater than the Elwa or larger.

  14. Just means we should get started now. It'll take a while.

    I'm under no illusions that this would lead to removal. Just dreaming.
    McNasty and Chris Johnson like this.
  15. It's a sixty five foot crack two inches wide.
  16. Maybe we could divert the water to the Seattle tunnel project, flush out Big Bertha and the rest of the tunnel blockage. There might be some silting however.
    Chad Lewis and dryflylarry like this.
  17. When rivers were wild, they seem to manage to flush themselves out, but then comes along fields that don't have good cover crops, over harvesting of Timber, massive silt build up behind dams, and it is easy to kill a river and small streams with silt. The Bear River in southern Idaho doesn't hold a tenth of the fish that it did when I was a kid---a lot of that is due to silt...fewer white fish, hardly any crayfish, cutthroat are nearly non existent rainbows are few etc.

    The Lower Touchet is also significantly silted. I have no idea what the impact would be on the Reach if the silt from Wanapum made it past Priest Rapids. The bottom line is it takes a river a long time to recover from silt.
  18. Has anyone heard any reputable report on the impact of catastrophic failure of Wanapum and over cresting of Priest Rapids?
  19. Salmo g. No ROV on any Mid-C dam. Only Chief Joe and G.C. have pen stocks.
    At Wanapum and Priest Rapids power production would be terminated well before the spillway flow would stop.
    Wanapum has been drawn down four ft. so far today. It looks like they will hit their target of 551.5 by the time day shift goes to work on Monday.
    Priest Rapids is being operated with in its normal level of one foot from the top.
    That tells me not to worry. They have a problem and when it is safe to do so closer inspections and survey will determine a strategy for repair.

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