Once upon a time the Elwha River contained one of the Olympic Peninsula's most important and abundant salmon runs. Then came the dams.
But on Oct. 24, the base of the Glines Canyon Dam was notched low enough that its impoundment of Lake Mills ceased to exist, and the Elwha, for the first time in almost 100 years, flowed free once more.
Explore the unique history of the Elwha River and the long, remarkable journey that led to removal of its dams in the next episode of the San Juans Stewardship Network's At the Water's Edge Lecture series: "Elwha River Dam Removal & Restoration: A Photographic Journey with Eric Kessler".
The presentation is Thursday, Dec. 6, 6-7 p.m., at the Grange Hall in Friday Harbor. Admission is free.
San Juan Island's Kessler has photographed, explored and been a guide on the Elwha River for 35 years. The San Juan Island naturalist and photographer studied the natural history of the Olympic Peninsula at Evergreen State College before stumbling into a career as a naturalist and leading guided walks in the Olympic National Park more than a decade ago. His photographs have been published worldwide and he is at work on a writing/photo project focused on the Elwha.