Klean Kanteen has had a long love affair with water in general and rivers in particular. We were thrilled to join American Rivers and around 300 passionate river advocates to witness the historic breaching of Washington's Condit Dam on the White Salmon River. Jeff Cresswell, co-owner of Klean Kanteen, was on-hand to mark the occasion, bringing north special edition steel pints to raise money (and hold New Belgium brew) for American Rivers important and ongoing work to restore the nation's rivers.
The White Salmon River flows from the slopes of Mt. Adams to the Columbia River. Portions of the river are designated as a Wild and Scenic or are protected as part of the Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area. American Rivers has worked for over ten years with partners including the Yakama Indian Nation to lead the effort to remove the 95-year old, 125-foot Condit Dam. Removal of the dam willl restore access to 33 miles of habitat for steelhead and 14 miles of habitat for chinook salmon.
While a year's worth of demolition and rubble removal remain, the White Salmon River itself is flowing free for the first time in a century. Klean Kanteen was proud to support such an important and historic event, and organizations like American Rivers working to protect and restore waterways for future generations.
See the initial dam explosion, which used over 700 lbs of dynamite to blow a hole in the base of Condit Dam and release the river water. Experts estimated the reservoir lake above the dam would take about 4-6 hours to fully drain. It took less than an hour. The mighty White Salmon was just yearning to be free!