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seattle-city-light-hydro-831.jpg.crop_display Photos by Martin Rosenberg

Dam Bling Lights Cascades Night

Backwoods hydroelectric lighting spectacle

As dusk fell, we headed up a tranquil north Washington state backĀ road to the village of Newhalem, Wash.

At the top of the village, just below Gorge Lake, sits Gorge Dam, erected in 1921. Its first power made it over the rough Cascades MountainsĀ to Seattle in 1924 to serve the customers of Seattle City Light.

According to Google search, the dam was featured in the 1974 movie, Parallax View, with Warren Beatty.

Now its sleepy claim to fame is that some engineers with an artistic touch have wired some plunging waterfalls behind the dam to flood them with iridescent nighttime lights.

About a half-dozen of us took in the spectacle in mid-August just as the Perseid meteor shower was warming up its act.

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