July 30th, 2011

Posted on 30. Jul, 2011 by Greg Mossfeldt in Minnewanka

The images taken today were from the areas closest to the causeway. We visited the 1912 Bridge pilings at the start of our journey, we then followed the cofferdam contour to the 1912 Dam and also explored the 1923 Power Plant where we see divers exiting the power house window. The Lake Minnewanka Power Plant was commissioned in 1923 after the coal fired Steam Generation plant Bankhead community provided was abandoned in 1922 thus a loss of power would have resulted in the town of Banff. Alternate generation would obviously be required and the power plant was constructed in anticipation of this generation loss from the demise of Bankhead. This generation project was actually scoped when building the storage dam in 1912. The Lake Minnewanka project may be divisible into two components ... water storage and secondly hydro generated power.

Three houses were also built adjacent to the 1912 Dam which consisted for a Dam Superintendent Major Enoch Smith and the two others to house operators of this facility. We have filmed and documented these three buildings and still record their well being.

The Cascade River is formed from the glacial melt of Flints and Bonnet Peaks, as well as Block Mountain. Glacial lakes that drain into the Cascade include Goat Lake, Sawback Lake, Elk Lake, and Cuthead Lake. The river also takes on Stoney Creek before entering the dramatic Stewart Canyon, then draining into Lake Minnewanka.