Calaveras Dam Field Trip Report

Panoramic view from the right abutment of the new Calaveras Dam.

Panoramic view from the right abutment of the new Calaveras Dam.

On Friday, June 3, 2016 a group of fourteen intrepid AEG members visited Calaveras Dam for presentations and a site tour. Our first AEGSF field trip in several years, it was deemed a grand success by all involved!

Bradley discusses NOA and shares great rock samples!

Bradley discusses NOA and shares great rock samples!

We met at the (rather expansive) field trailers just outside the dam site and, after a site environmental briefing, were treated to two excellent presentations. Glenn Gorski presented on the overall goals, challenges and changes to the project since it began in 2011, highlighting the impacts of previously unmapped landslides which were encountered during excavation.

IMG_8874

Glenn Gorski presents to field trip participants.

Bradley Erskine presented on the Naturally Occurring Asbestos (NOA) issues associated with construction, including containment measures, monitoring protocols, and laboratory testing of air samples. We also viewed a fantastic time lapse video of construction completed to date which you can view online here.

After the presentations, we piled into several project pickup trucks and viewed the site from the left and right abutments. We were able to see the entirety of the dam excavation, constructed spillway, and associated geologic exposures.

Entering NOA area!

Entering NOA area!

Glenn and Bradley accompanied our group to both sites and continued to answer questions about construction methods, geologic mapping results, NOA monitoring and abatement efforts, and everything in between. We returned to the field trailers (but not without thorough vehicle and personnel decon!) and enjoyed a tasty lunch while getting to know each other better.  After lunch, a few hearty souls continued networking at Bosco’s restaurant and bar in nearby Sunol, CA before heading home.

Action shot! Bradley pointing out features of the site geology from the right abutment.

Action shot! Bradley pointing out features of the site geology from the right abutment.

Action shot! Glenn explaining things in the field.

Action shot! Glenn explaining things in the field.

Our visit to Calaveras Dam was thoroughly educational and enjoyable! Many thanks to all who attended. AEGSF especially thanks Glenn Gorski and Bradley Erskine for their onsite education and assistance, Maria Le of SFPUC for coordinating on behalf of the Owner, Ryan Coe for helping run the field trip and obtaining our all-important lunches, and Courtney Johnson for helping keep track of our member registrations. Let’s do another field trip soon!

All images courtesy of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission / Photographer E. Morley Beckman.

Left abutment of new Calaveras Dam, as viewed from the right abutment.

Left abutment of new Calaveras Dam, as viewed from the right abutment.

Field trip participants gathered at the left abutment.

Field trip participants gathered at the left abutment.

This entry was posted in Field Trips. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.