Trees felled in preparation for Elwha dam removal

Lake Mills, Washington (AP) September 2010

Work is underway to prepare for the removal of two dams on the Olympic Peninsula’s Elwha River.

Crews with Cherokee Construction Services of Vancouver, Wash., last week began clearing a 37-acre grove of alder trees off a delta where the rivers meets Lake Mills. The Peninsula Daily News reports that the grove is expected to be cleared by Friday, and then workers can begin digging a channel in preparation for the dam removal.

Crews will begin tearing down the 108-foot high Elwha Dam and the 210-foot high Glines Canyon Dam in September 2011.

The 45-mile Elwha River was once home to legendary runs of salmon and has important value to the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe. The project is billed as the largest dam removal in U.S. history. It’s expected to be completed in 2014.



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