San Luis Reservoir and the O’Niell Forebay

I’ve a long list of photoblog posts to do – on agriculture, the Salton Sea, Keeler, and a trip to Parkfield to view more of the San Andreas Fault … look for those in the upcoming weeks.  I’m going to continue working on the backlog with these pictures around the San Luis Reservoir joint complex that I took on my way to a conference in Monterey in early May.

The San Luis Reservoir is a joint federal-state facility, meaning it serves both the State Water Project and the Central Valley Project.  Storage in the reservoir and the costs for the supporting infrastructure are split on a 55%/45% basis with the state paying the larger share.  One of the joint-use facilities is the Dos Amigos Pumping Plant.  The viewpoint  is only accessible for northbound vehicles on the I-5.  This pumping plant is located below the San Luis Reservoir.

 

The sky was really fabulous this day …

Further up, off the interstate along a side road are the gates that allow water in and out of the canal into the O’Niell Forebay.

I have to confess I have always wanted to return here after snapping this picture on a gray day about four years ago …

The great thing about the point-and-shoot was that I could stick it through the chain link fence and get closer to it – something I can’t do with my SLR.  This was as close as I could get, so I was headed back to my car to grab the point-and-shoot when someone came by to shoo me away … something about Homeland Security … it’s a common theme when I am out shooting infrastructure.  However, not feeling like getting arrested or fined today, plus I want to get to Monterey, so off I go …

Here’s the Gianelli Pumping Plant with the Sisk Dam behind it.  The pumping plant  takes the water from the O’Niell Forebay and pumps it up into the San Luis Reservoir.  The plant can also draw water from the reservoir and put it back in the O’Niell Forebay, generating hydroelectricity in the process.

Here’s the O’Niell Forebay.  It’s hard to photograph here as it is so flat.  I could get closer to it, but I’d have to pay, so it’s on up the hill to the reservoir.  It looks fairly full from far away …

 

Not so full closer up, but not in bad shape, either.

The lines that the water makes looks rather artistic to me, and reminds me of another time I photographed a reservoir that had the same sort of thing … see the next post below.  In the meantime, it’s on to Monterey!

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