Monday, August 8, 2016

Another Look at Bonneville Dam

There is a lot to see here in the Columbia River Gorge area.  We took a 30 minute drive from our campground on the outskirts of Portland and make our way directly east along the Columbia River.  About 40 minutes later we were at the US Army Corps of Engineers Visitors Center on Bradford Island.
We've been to this place before, having visited in five years ago when we made our way west through the Columbia River Gorge.  This place had a nice little museum and a fish ladder that was made to accommodate the thousands of salmon heading up river to spawn.

One of our goals this summer was to learn more about Lewis and Clark and this place was right along their route to the Pacific Ocean.
The Chinook Indians used to live in the area and they were one of the friendly tribes Lewis and Clark met along the way while exploring the area.
During their expedition in the early 1800's (1804-1806), they brought along many items to trade with the Indians including knives and glass beads.
I liked the map that showed their route from St. Louis up the Missouri River, across the Rockies and through the Cascade mountains to the coast.
This particular facility was name after this guy.  Bonneville became a pretty well know name in the history of our country but I never knew much about this guy but he was another of the many expolorers of the region, having visited this area in the 1830's.

This dam was one of eight federal dams and locks built along the Columbia and Snake Rivers.  This was built between 1932-1938 to provide electricity and spur economic development in the Pacific Northwest.   
I am amazed at the things this country built in the 1930's:  Hoover Dam, this, Golden Gate Bridge, Norris Dam in Tennessee (TVA) and I'm sure there is a long list...

Here's some photos of the area near the visitor center:
Outside the visitor center along the walkway that shows  some the fish ladders
And inside - I thought they did a good job with explaining all the fish that climb upstream.  You can even watch the fish do their thing
They have been counting types and kinds of fish for many years here.  These are the numbers for the 2015 and the 10 year average.
Fascinating!
It was another interesting time at the place.  We saw Boy Scouts there as well as a bunch of visitors like us.  It was a fun way to spend some time.

We drove around the property again and went over to the volunteer RV park where folks stay and check it out.  Would be a nice place to work/live for a few weeks or even the summer.

That's all for now on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  Thanks for joining us.

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