Timeline of the Elwha River dams & Removal Efforts

 

1910 - Construction begins on the Elwha Dam (at river mile 4.9). Tribal members were opposed to it from the beginning

 

1912 - Elwha Dam blows out during construction, flooding the area downstream where many Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe members lived

 

1914 - Elwha Dam is completed; Lake Aldwell reservoir is created

 

1922 - Fish hatchery (which was built as part of the Elwha Dam project) closes

 

1925 - Construction begins on the Glines Canyon Dam (at river mile 13.6)

 

1927 - Glines Canyon Dam is completed; Lake Mills reservoir is created

 

1938 - Congress establishes Olympic National Park, which includes Glines Canyon Dam within its boundaries

 

1974 - Boldt decision in U.S. v. Washington upholds tribal fishing rights

 

1978 - Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe's fish hatchery is built

Late 1970’s – HUD Housing was not allowed due to Elwha River flooding safety concerns

 

1986 – Tribe and Sierra group filed a formal request to remove dams

 

1989 - Army Corps of Engineers completes dike on the Elwha River. Tribe obtains grant to begin studies for dam removal.

 

1990 – Federal Government begins to study dam removal

Early 90’s – HUD approves housing at the Lower Elwha Reservation

 

1992 - Congress passes Elwha River Ecosystem and Fisheries Restoration Act

 

1994 – Department of Interior determines that removal is necessary for full fisheries restoration

 

2000 - Federal government acquires Elwha River dams

 

2009 - Dam removal is postponed

 

2011 – June 1st - After 98 years generators at the dam powerhouse turned off forever.

 

           June 13 - Lake Aldwell has already dropped 18 feet. The Elwha River is finding it's natural channel.

 

           September 17 - 6 feet removed, dam removal begins.

 

           November 1 - Elwha Rivers will close.

2012 - Old Tribal Hatchery de-comissioned

2013 -It is noted that beaches are growing