Wade Bryson's Report on Record Churchill River Water Flow of 2005


Hello Dave,

When I left a note in your guest book close to two years ago I wrote something to the fact that "We would take good care of the ol' gal (powerhouse)" . This is just a little note to let you know what we have been facing up here at The Falls.

I am not sure if you have been following the current water situation at Island Falls or not. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the plant, and how fitting to mark the anniversary as to have recorded breaking flows on both the Churchill River and the Reindeer River systems. We have hit 2300 cubic meters/second flows which converted would be around 81,190 cubic feet/second. Normal flows are around 22,000 - 24,000 cfs.

We have been running an operating crew 24/7 since the end of Aug, and as luck has it I am stuck on nights right now. I was just going through some of the pic's we have been taking and thought maybe you would like to add a couple to your web site? I also took a brief video of the current flow @ A-dam 1896 cms (66,928 cfs). Its only less than 30 sec I believe but you definitely get an idea what we are up against. The flows have been slowly tapering off so we are taking a little sigh of relief here. [Note: we have asked Wade to send us this clip for display here]

The tail water is approx. 16' - 17' higher than normal. The tail race deck has been awash for close to a month now. All our louvers on the deck have been boarded up and sealed off to prevent water from flowing into the power house from the tailrace. In the pump room we had to build bulkheads around where A & B units draft tubes are visible from the floor. The water would be around 18" higher than the floor in the pump room and the wind tunnel, which connects the turbine pits on units 1-6.

We lost our road into the power house also at the end of Aug. We built the road up by Tower 13 five to six feet in order to make it passable again. Most of us have had only a couple of days off since middle of Aug.

Wade Bryson
Hydro Station Operator, Island Falls Generating Station
(306)-754-2101 (306)-754-2265 Fax

Click here to see a 25-second movie of the unusual A-Dam flow. Warning: large file -- for High-Speed connections only!