Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Strange flowers at the Ballard Locks! Never seen these before!
Two days in a row I went to the Chittenden Locks in Ballard Washington. Once with Sarah, we saw the boats go out to the ocean, The next day with Jason and we saw the boats come in from the ocean to Lake Washington.
The locks are next to this dam. The while tubes with water coming out, make it easier for the migrating salmon to get through.
There are walk ways all around this big place. Water is higher on one side and lower on the other. On the fresh water side boats dock.
This is the visitors center. The whole place is surrounded by beautiful gardens. The green on the sides is where the water is.
If boats are coming out to the ocean, they start out in high fresh water. They are roped to the sides that slowly let water out and take the boats down to the ocean level.

This is how low it can go. The green algae shows it best on the pictures above.

This is one of the gates that opens up. Walk ways are on top so foot passengers can cross. Each walk way has a tall red light that blinks and makes noise to let people know they must get off for the gate to open.
Sometimes your boat needs a boat!
This bridge opens up to let large boats go though. Here a train is on the bridge.
This is a sign to the fish ladder. The salmon have to swim upstream on stairs like this. Sometimes they are really high. With both Jason and Sarah we saw fish jump out of the water.
This is the underground salmon viewing area. We saw some big ones. I think every student in WA state learns about the salmon growing process and migration patterns. There are fish hatcheries around the area and some classrooms can hatch and grow salmon.
These are boats going in to the fresh water. Jason and I were surprised to see 7 or 8 kayak's waiting too.
One kayak had a dog standing on it the whole time. He stood on a special black mat and was calm as can be with the boats so close and with moving! Pretty cool dog!
A Canadian Goose even went through all by itself. It seemed like he/she knew what it was doing and the boats waited for it. Good little bird!
This is the boats going out which I saw with Sarah.
This is on Lake Washington. I like the 3 different boats pictures here: a kayak, a tug boat and one of those boats I don't know the name of.
Some art work at the locks.
The locks are a very cool place to go. The summer time is a great place to see how it really works. You can even catch a tour or have a picnic there.
A picture from the internet of a aerial view.
The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks are a complex of locks that sit at the west end of Salmon Bay, part of Seattle's Lake Washington Ship Canal.[2] They are known locally as the Ballard Locks[3][4] after the neighborhood to their north. (Magnolia lies to the south.)

The locks and associated facilities serve three purposes:

The complex includes two locks, a small (30 x 150 ft, 8.5 x 45.7 meter) and a large (80 x 825 ft, 24.4 x 251.5 meter).[7] The complex also includes a (235-foot, 71.6 meter) spillway with six (32 x 12-foot (3.7 m), 9.8 x 3.7 meter) gates to assist in water-level control.[7] A fish ladder is integrated into the locks for migration of anadromous fish, notably salmon.[8][6]

The grounds feature a visitors center,[9] as well as the Carl S. English, Jr., Botanical Gardens.[10]

Operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,[11] the locks were formally opened on July 4, 1917,[12] although the first ship passed on August 3, 1916.[13] They were named after U.S. Army Major Hiram Martin Chittenden, the Seattle District Engineer for the Corps of Engineers from April 1906 to September 1908.[9] They were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.[1]

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