UPDATE— Glines Canyon Dam at waterline after explosion
This webcam image shows blast preparations being performed Monday afternoon on the remaining stub of Glines Canyon Dam. — Olympic National Park
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“We’re getting close to the time when they will be working below the waterline,” said Rainey McKenna, spokeswoman for the Olympic National Park.
Demolition crews set off about 2,000 pounds of explosives packed into a concrete stub of the formerly 210-foot-tall dam.
It reduced it from a height of about 35 feet to 20 or 25 feet, mostly buried under the rubble of earlier dam demolition.
“It is not yet passable for salmon, but we’re getting very close,” McKenna said.
McKenna said an additional section of the dam will be removed in coming weeks.
Removal of the dam is part of the $325 million Elwha River restoration project, designed to open the 70 miles of river to salmon and steelhead that are or historically have been a part of the river’s ecosystem.
The 108-foot-tall Elwha Dam, located 8 miles downstream from Glines Canyon Dam, was completely dismantled in March 2012.
Glines Canyon Dam is on schedule for full removal by the September deadline, despite delays caused by sediment buildups in water intake filters.
UPDATE — Another 20 feet of the Glines Canyon Dam disappeared Monday night in a shower of concrete and silt, and reduced the once grand dam to a low wall mostly covered in silt.
PORT ANGELES — Workers were on schedule to blast away at the last upright section of Glines Canyon Dam early Monday evening, and hopes are to finish the removal project by May 1, according to Olympic National Park spokeswoman Barb Maynes.
Officials from contractor Barnard Construction Inc. of Bozeman, Mont., hope to have the edifice completely demolished by May 1, she said.
The contract with Bozeman calls for completion by Sept. 30.
Icy roads from Seattle's weekend snowfall prevented explosives from being safely transported from Seattle to Port Angeles in time for the scheduled blast Sunday.
The blast that was slated for Monday will not be the last, Maynes said.
“There are several more blasts that need to happen at the very bottom of the dam,” Maynes said.
Blasting on Glines Canyon Dam was shut down in November to accommodate fish migration.
The fish windows prevent detonations for about half the year during various periods.
Blasting resumed in January, when about 2,000 pounds of explosives reduced a 55-foot-tall section of Glines to 35 feet.
The next two-month fish window begins May 1.
“The contractor is very hopeful to be able to finish up before the next fish window,” Maynes said.
Workers completed removal of the 108-foot-tall Elwha Dam located 8 miles downstream from 210-foot Glines Canyon Dam in March 2012.
The $325 million effort river restoration effort is intended to restore 70 miles of the waterway and its tributaries for salmon and steelhead runs that were severed when the dams were built, the Elwha in 1912 and Glines in 1927.
Last modified: February 11. 2014 12:49PM