I landed in the short brush along side one of the many dirt trails leading up to the canyon, this one was inactive as a road, and why I didn't bother to not block it! Getting the bike out and ready to ride, took only the usual 5 or 10 minutes, by the time I loaded my backpack with everything I might need. On these type of rides, I never know how long or far I may be going. I had expected the trail leading up the canyon, to reveal the intake, but when it didn't, I continued on as it was a great ride anyway and I wanted to see how far I could get up the canyon, which leads up to a 11,000' mountain, part of the highest range in Idaho. Shortly after taking this picture (and in the biking Zen of having plenty of battery, personal energy, time, and good weather) and fully prepared to ride to wherever the trail ended, I rounded a switchback and BAM, it ended! It looked like a little exploratory digging was done, mine related, long ago. Thus the reason for the trail, still a great ride of a couple thousand vertical, with great views. I failed to show the discharge pipe into the pond outside the power shack, but it couldn't have been more then a few hundred gallons per minute, less then 500 anyway. This system may be designed to make its money during the spring and summer runoff months, this time of year all water around these mountains slows down, as it's mostly snow melt from the previous winter.
I'll make a separate post about a much larger hydro system just across the valley later.
Thanks to some great weather over the weekend, I was able to make it back up to this hydro site. Any day now, this high country will be locked in snow, so I jumped at the chance. To my surprise, the main feed for the plant seems to be an open canal off to one side, NOT the canyon directly above the power building as it would appear. At least, in exploring up the canyon, I could see no intake or signs of recent excavation etc. They must have had a reason to offset the intake like, maybe land ownership issues. That canal had 2 or 3 different pipes feeding into it, but none looking like they delivered a lot of water. And when I flew over the bottom discharge pond, the low flow was evident. I'd call this a pretty small system, and I have to wonder if they are making any money with it. Then again, if it was designed around the flow I saw, maybe so.