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Oh Dam! it's Ice Harbor Lock and Dam

Series: Oh Dam!

Today we’re discussing Ice Harbor Lock and Dam located on the Snake River “upstream of McNary Lock and Dam and Lake Wullala.”1

The project was enabled by the River and Harbor Act of 1945. Construction began in t9156 and was completed in 1961. The dam creates Lake Sacajawea, which “extends upstream about 32 miles to Lower Monumental Lock and Dam and has a surface area of 9,200 acres.”1

Ice Harbor Lock And Dam Dedication Ceremony (Engineer recruitment program)
Ice Harbor Lock And Dam Dedication Ceremony (Engineer recruitment program)

The navigation lock is a “single-lift lock, 86 feet wide by 675 feet long, with a 100 foot vertical lift. In 2015, traffic through the navigation lock consisted of grains, petroleum products, fertilizer, wood products, and miscellaneous cargo that amounted to more 2.3 million tons.”1

The dam was built with two fish ladders but “in 2005, a spillway weir was also installed to improve passage conditions for juvenile salmon downstream out migration. Because of significant declines in Pacific Lamprey through its range during the past three decades, in 2009, modifications were made to one Ice Harbor fish ladder to improve adult lamprey passage. Those modifications included a lamprey fish ladder entrance weir, lamprey passage structures, ladder improvements and installation of metal plating to assist lamprey upstream.”1


Photos courtesy of PG 94 (Army Corps of Engineers Dam Construction Photographs).

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