Explore a dry dam, learn how it can save lives

Part of the free Get Outdoors Poconos series

Sunday, November 18, 2018 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Brodhead Watershed Association

A dry dam sounds like a contradiction. The point of a dam is to hold water, right?

The answer is yes. And also no.

On Sunday, Nov. 18, Brodhead Watershed Association will host a talk-and-walk to a dry dam that helps regulate the flow of the Leavitt Branch, one of the headwaters of Brodhead Creek in Monroe County, Pa.

The dam is almost 10 stories high, and the trail across the top runs perhaps a quarter mile from end to end. Drainage from this summer’s record-breaking rains has collected as a small lake. The dam kept this water from racing away downstream, and its outlet structures release the runoff water at a controlled rate. The lake will slowly shrink, and the dam will become dry again. With a capacity of 350,000,000 gallons, after major storm events, the dam could save lives.

After a deadly flood in 1955, determination — and political will — finally ensured that this dam was dedicated in 1974. Every person and property downstream is safer for it.

On Nov. 18, Adam Schellhammer of Monroe County Conservation District will share the story and the science: how to protect drinking water, prevent erosion, keep the watershed safe, and coexist with nature, rather than constantly fighting it. His talk will be indoors, and participants will carpool to see the dam.
The walk at the dam is short, but there is plenty to see. And plenty to think about, too.


Join Carol Hillestad and Adam Schellhammer for a talk-and-walk about dry dams, starting at The Friendly Community Center in Mountainhome. Parking at the dry dam is limited. Please be willing to carpool. The walk is easy, with a slight incline and a grassy path that is uneven in places and may be wet.

WHEN: 10 a.m. Sunday, November 18, 2018

NOTE: The dry dam is owned, managed and maintained by Monroe County, and is not open to the public.

COST: Free, but registration is required.

INFORMATION: Call 570-839-1120 or 570-629-2727; email info@brodheadwatershed.org. For information about this and other hikes in the free Get Outdoors Poconos series, go to brodheadwatershed.org/gopoconos. The hike series is administered by Brodhead Watershed Association and supported by a grant from the William Penn Foundation.


Friendly Community Center
6683 PA-191
Mountainhome, PA 18342

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