In photos: Revelstoke Dam spillway roars

BC Hydro releases excess water during periods of low energy demand.

The Revelstoke Dam spillway was opened up over the weekend providing onlookers with a spectacular sight. Photo: Jen Walker-Larsen/BC Hydro.

The Revelstoke Dam was a sight to be seen as water roared out of the spillway at a rate of 174 cubic meters per second between midnight and 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 5.

BC Hydro has been periodically releasing small volumes over the Revelstoke Dam spillway since April 25, 2018 during low energy demand periods. BC Hydro spokesperson Jen Walker-Larsen said this is a common operation during the spring when water is plentiful and there is a reduced demand for electricity.

A photo of water roaring out of the Revelstoke Dam spillway on Saturday, May 5. Photo: Jen Walker-Larsen/BC Hydro.

“ We are using the spill releases to maintain the minimum fish flow required downstream from Revelstoke dam during low demand periods when it is less economic to generate power from our generating units,” Walker-Larsen said in an email to the Mountaineer.

Spill releases from Revelstoke Dam are most likely to occur overnight but can also occur occasionally during the day. The decision for these small spills is typically made an hour or so before the spill starts, meaning unlike large spill releases public notifications are not sent out. A large spill release is not anticipated this year, said Walker-Larsen.