Thursday, October 15, 2009

Ray and Reva Visit: Part 1 Bonneville Dam

The Friday that Ray and Reva (Steve's parents) came to visit, Steve took the day off and we traveled to Portland, Oregon. Our first stop was at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River. We stopped at the Bradford Island Visitor Center and took a tour.
This is a view from the outside of visitor center of Tabletop Mountain.
The dam.
This is the display they have outside of one of the old turbines from inside the power house. These turbines are being replaced with ones that decrease gaps in the turbine in order to be more fish friendly. We were impressed that the new turbines will increase smolt survival rates to as high as 98%! And that's just the smolts that don't get diverted before the turbine.
The fish ladder. It has 60 steps and rises 60 feet.The underwater viewing window of the fish ladders from the basement of the visitor center.The inside of the power house. The nearest turbine was under construction to have the newer turbine installed.This is one of the two cranes that they use for construction in the power house. It stretches across the whole building and was massive!Us outside the visitor center.
Next we went to the fish hatchery. They have a sturgeon viewing area where they have a number of HUGE sturgeon in a big pond. This first picture is just to give you some idea of how large some of the fish really were. And this was a small one!So this is Herman. Herman was like 40 years old (I think) and 10 feet long! He was massive and I think if I ever went swimming and ran into Herman I would never swim again!The hatchery also had a trout pond. There were so many trout and you could feed them out of a quarter machine. They were so used to being fed that we watched people just stick fingers over the edge of the pond and the fish would jump out of the water to get them. They were fascinating to watch.

We had a lot of fun during our visit with Ray and Reva and this was just our first stop!

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