Shaver Lake Dam Draining Project

The Southern California Edison Company built Shaver Lake for hydroelectric power. This year, SCE drained the lake to repair the dam. When the water receded, historic buildings were revealed. After the dam is repaired, many of these buildings may not be seen for another hundred years.

 (bryan farley)

At 5300 feet, Shaver Lake is often surrounded by snow from November until March. Seeing snow is not unusual.  Seeing the rocks exposed and the docks on the ground is once in a lifetime.

SEE Photo Gallery

 (bryan farley)

3 Responses to “Shaver Lake Dam Draining Project”

  1. Great — hope you got more shots of the buildings. I did the same thing at Lake Shasta in 1977 after the three year drought. Ten towns were drowned in the late 1930s but in 1977 the lake was 218 feet down. It’s a remarkable experience to walk among structures that are normally below water line.
    Douglas Westfall, historic publisher

    • bryan farley says:


      The Lake Shasta experience sounds pretty cool. If I remember correctly, in 1977 there was a bad drought.

      In Shaver I did not get to see as much as I would have liked, but it was still really interesting. I thought the water level would go down further… I don’t know what I was thinking. I guess I thought the lake would be drained completely. I thought people would be allowed to walk around on the lake bottom, but the bottom is so saturated it is like quick sand.

      Still pretty interesting.

  2. illieb flower says:

    Yeah, it was interesting. One of the many things that stood out for me was how everyone in town was talking about fishing in the newly filled lake. When I finally made my way up there it was an eerie site. If I remember correctly the water was off limits due to some safety concerns.

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