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HitTheTrail
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 9:48 am 
Can anybody provide historical material on the Snow Lakes dam and water pipe project. I am told that drilling the borehole up into the bottom of the lake was a world engineering marvel of its time. Also, oldtimers told me that there was a large construction camp somewhere around Nada Lake where construction workers stayed. I would love to read some history on this subject.

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kleet
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 12:43 pm 
There's some history of the irrigation project in the book Stevens Pass by JoAnn Roe.

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HitTheTrail
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 1:55 pm 
Thanks for the reference. There is a passing mention of the borehole into Snow Lakes. But, I got side tracked reading the history of Leavenworth and forgot all about my original interest. I must get that publication and sit down with it when I have more time.

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Scrooge
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 10:27 pm 
Hit The Trail said
Quote:
I am told that drilling the borehole up into the bottom of the lake was a world engineering marvel of its time.

That chapter on the Irrigation District's history was a good read, but it did not answer (or even address) the question about the borehole. Ever since I saw the remarkable Snow Lake "outlet" ......
Snow Lake "outfall"
Snow Lake "outfall"
........ I've been trying to find out why it was done that way? Why dam the lake and then send the water 200 feet downhill through a pipe ....... just to shoot it back into the creek?

Something lost behind the ranges. Lost and waiting for you....... Go and find it. Go!
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Backpacker Joe
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 11:37 pm 
All the big lakes in the 11worth basin were tapped with man made dams allowing them to service the farms and or fish streams during the depression as I understand it. Colchuck Snow Lakes Eight Mile Klonaqua Square Help me out folks. Tom

"If destruction be our lot we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen we must live through all time or die by suicide." — Abraham Lincoln
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Malachai Constant
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PostSun Jun 07, 2009 11:45 pm 
Scrooge the reason for the bathtub plug in Snow Lake is it allow control the valve is not always open only when they want. BJP, I have seen some valves and small dams in the Upper Enchantments but they do not appear to be functional any more.

"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
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HitTheTrail
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PostMon Jun 08, 2009 9:00 am 
Alas, kind of a shame really. The bathtub ring in Snow Lake late in the summer is quite an eyesore. Seems like part of the Enchantment Wilderness act would have been to put the plug in and leave it in!!

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PostTue Jun 16, 2009 5:18 pm 
Snow Lakes Dam and diversion service the Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery. Here is a link which talks about water quality issues at the Fish Hatchery. There is a brief discussion about Snow Lakes water use. Basically the hatchery needs cold water during late summer and fall. http://yosemite.epa.gov/R10/water.nsf/95537302e2c56cea8825688200708c9a/b57dde801d84ea1d88256d9d0058a783/$FILE/WA0001902%20FS.pdf The dams on the other lakes service the irrigation district.

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Sore Feet
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PostTue Jun 16, 2009 6:52 pm 
I've been curious about this thing too. It seems to me like it doesn't serve any purpose (at least anymore). As best as I have been able to tell, the water for the fish hatchery is siphoned off of Icicle Creek right above the Snow Lakes trailhead, and part of Snow Creek flows into the sluicebox. There doesn't appear to be any diversion further up in the drainage. If there was at one time, that makes partial sense, but the only reason I can think of for the presence of the drain in Snow Lake is if the pipe led to a diversion canal above Nada Lake and I've never seen any reports of relics in the area. I guess maybe its just designed as a water retention system and the pipe is used to keep Nada Lake full too and let the water gradually run off later in the summer, rather than just letting it all flow down Snow Creek's natural channel.

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HitTheTrail
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PostTue Jun 16, 2009 9:16 pm 
How did the fish get cool water before this scheme was cooked up?

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509
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PostWed Jun 17, 2009 9:33 am 
HitTheTrail wrote:
How did the fish get cool water before this scheme was cooked up?

There were no fish. The cold water is for the Fish Hatchery. The hatchery was put in as mitigation for Grand Coulee. Salmon did not make it past the hatchery location. In any case, the hatchery needs to cool water to operate in the late summer and fall. I believe that's why they drilled underneath the lake to get at the cooler water. The spray is probably to oxygenate the water. It does not warm up much before it hits the hatchery.

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Naffer
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PostTue Jul 28, 2009 5:42 am 
Square Lk valve

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kleet
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PostTue Jul 28, 2009 7:07 am 
Notice to Hikers Heading to Nada and Snow Lakes Repair work will begin in July and continue throughout this 2009 summer hiking season on the Nada and Upper Snow Lake Dams. Access to the Snow Lakes area will NOT be restricted due to the work. A temporary detour of the hiking trail will occur in September when Upper Snow Lake Dam is repaired. Work on Nada Lake Dam will occur during the whole month of July. The water level in Nada Lake will be several feet lower than in the past and once repaired, will remain lower year-round. Work on Upper Snow Lake Dam will occur during a two week period in September. Areas of deteriorating concrete will be patched and a trash rack will be installed on a gate. Work on the dams address safety and operational deficiencies identified during inspections done in August of 2008. All construction equipment, supply storage, and campsites for the workers will be set up adjacent to the Nada or Upper Snow Lake Dam. All personnel, equipment, gear and supplies will be transported by helicopter. Helicopter traffic will be heavy on several days for mobilization and demobilization of the worksite and for hauling cement to rebuild Nada Dam. Noise associated with generators, compressors, drills, hammers and other construction equipment should be expected. Work will be restricted to the hours of 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM daily. The US Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery (LNFH) possesses water rights in Upper and Lower Snow Lakes and Nada Lake. Prior to the Wilderness Act, the FWS has owned and operated the dams and other water delivery facilities on these lakes and the land in which they sit. Water released from the lakes support fish production at Leavenworth NFH during the summer. By agreement, the US Forest Service manages the land as a part of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness and the Enchantment Lakes permit area. For more information on this topic please contact Corky Broaddus, Information and Education Specialist, at Leavenworth NFH (509) 548-7641 or corky_broaddus@fws.gov. Thank you for your cooperation.

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Hulksmash
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PostWed Jul 29, 2009 12:09 pm 
confused.gif Where is the Wilderness boundary in relation to Snow lakes?

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MtnGoat
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PostWed Jul 29, 2009 3:49 pm 
letting the wilderness boundaries get in the way of necessary work has hopefully been overidden.

Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock. - Will Rogers
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