Conserving the Nature of America
Press Release
Agencies Work Together to Improve Infrastructure, Water Efficiency with Valve Replacement at Upper Snow Lake in Central Washington

September 24, 2019


USFWS: Amanda Smith,, (971) 270 - 8725

Reclamation: Michael Coffey,, (208) 378 - 5020

Leavenworth, Washington - In a continued effort to modernize infrastructure and ensure the safety and efficiency of operations at Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery, the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have contracted with Lacy Mechanical, Inc., to replace the existing Upper Snow Lake water release control valve associated with the Leavenworth National Fish Hatchery. Work will begin Sept. 29 and will conclude in November of this year.

The valve replacement is  vital to ensuring continued water delivery to LNFH. Snow Lake is an inholding surrounded by the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area.

The ALWA was established in 1976, and the USFWS owns the land around Snow and Nada lakes. Easements allow the hatchery to continue to maintain its water delivery system, ensuring all stakeholders needs are met.

As part of this agreement, the USFWS operates the Hatchery, while Reclamation funds maintenance, repairs, and infrastructure improvements. At the time the ALWA was designated, inholdings for access to water were not a concern. However, population growth and increased water demands have placed pressure on the delivery system. Prolonged stress on the valve could lead to catastrophic failure, with downstream consequences for nearby residents as well as for the hatchery’s spring Chinook salmon.  Therefore, replacement of the valve allowing water to flow from Snow and Nada lakes into Icicle Creek is essential.


Timing of the project was carefully selected to have the least overall impact on wildlife and people during feasible construction months. Scrap metal that has accumulated at the site from past work will be removed as part of the valve project, leaving the site cleaner.

Read more about the valve replacement project at the following url: LINK to draft EA

Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation’s second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

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