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Field Notes

Covering the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest

November 29, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Photos from a new world: Glines Canyon Dam going…going….

Brian Cluer of NOAA Fisheries was part of a team of scientists investigating progress of dam removal on the Elwha earlier this month…and the photos he took of the new world unfolding on the Elwha are amazing. Here is a view looking downstream, above what is left of Glines Canyon Dam. That’s Heidi Hugunin fish…

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November 19, 2012 at 7:00 AM

All that’s left of Condit Dam

Is this little fist-sized piece of concrete. Tom O’Keefe of American Whitewater shot this photo of the last hunk of Condit Dam. For O’Keefe and other whitewater paddlers, the White Salmon River is now open and they are savoring every splash. Here’s a link for more photos from O’Keefe’s celebratory paddle on the White Salmon. Dammed…

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November 15, 2012 at 1:00 PM

Elwha: Images of a landscape transformed

The former lakebed of the reservoir behind Aldwell Dam has just passed its first summer, and what a difference a season makes. From this…

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A brave willow shoot sprouts on the bed of the former Lake Aldwell in March 2012.

Photo by Lynda Mapes

To this:

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Lush swaths of new growth are already taking root along the riverbank in the former Lake Aldwell.

Photo by Julie Titone.

The pace of change on the Elwha is breathtaking.

Julie Titone, a former Spokesman-Review environmental reporter, took these photos while visiting the Elwha for the first time since the dams came out.

Like many Northwesterners, Julie has followed the Elwha story for decades, writing about dam removal on the Elwha for the Spokesman-Review back in the 1990s when (to some) it still seemed like a crazy idea that would (and should) never happen. As she explored the Elwha after a nice fall soaker she was treated to this amazing sight, of stumps of the Elwha’s former riparian forest, cut before Lake Aldwell was filled for Elwha Dam:

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Stumps steaming in the morning sun. Get out and see the Elwha for yourself, it is a landscape transformed, before your very eyes.

Photo by Julie Titone

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November 9, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Now open after 100 years: the White Salmon River

PacifiCorp announced this week it has lifted all access restrictions on the White Salmon River, after having fully completed its removal of Condit Dam and its restoration of the area. White Salmon river, looking upstream toward former Condit Dam site. Courtesy, PacifiCorp The restoration got under way just more than a year ago, when the utility

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November 8, 2012 at 5:30 PM

Octopus hunter now a voice for protection at Cove 2

Dylan Mayer, the octopus hunter who sparked an outrage when he took one of the charismatic animals at Cove 2, a popular dive site in West Seattle, was the first voice for a ban on hunting in the cove at a public hearing before the state Fish and Wildlife Commission meeting in Olympia Thursday. “I didn’t…

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