A Long Weekend into the Kootenays
Part III (Revelstoke Dam)
Compared to yesterday, today was raining and my plans for visiting Glacier National Park were relegated for another occasion. Instead, I decided to do a short walk on Giant Cedars Nature Trail. This is home of some of the oldest trees in the Columbia Mountains.
The largest members of this forest are the shaggy-barked western red cedar and the furrowed, dark brown western hemlock.
I followed a 500 metre boardwalk waving through a rare stage of forest development known as old-growth. Thanks to the moist air flowing from the Pacific Ocean and rising over the Columbia Mountains, this is the only place in the world where a temperate rainforest exists this far from an ocean coastline.
After that, I paid a short visit to Revelstoke Dam. I was the first Colombian of the year visiting this place. The Revelstoke Dam and Revelstoke Reservoir are situated five km north of Revelstoke. The powerhouse, completed in 1984, it's equipped with four generators with the ability to produce 1,980 MW of electricity, making BC Hydro's second largest power plant.
As you can see on the picture, the powerhouse has space to house two more generators to meet future electricity demands. Some of the electricity is exported to places as far as California. The Columbia River is the fourth largest river basin in North America, exceeded only by the Mississippi, MacKenzie and St. Lawrence rivers.
Many dams have been built along the Columbia River in both Canada and the United States, regulating water levels on over 90 per cent of the river's 1,900 km length.
Storage and hydroelectric dams on the Columbia River were developed by Canada and the United States for two main purposes: flood management and electricity production.
There is another dam before Revelstoke, is called the Mica Dam. The Mica Dam was completed in 1973 under the Columbia River Treaty. The Mica Powerhouse, completed in 1976, is able to produce 1,805 MV of electricity.
It was past 1:00 p.m. and I decided to go south following Highway 23 .
1. Revelstoke Town
Driven so far = 62 km (38.75 miles)