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Salmon Falls Dam
Salmon Falls Dam shortly after completion in 1910
Salmon Falls Dam is located in Idaho
Salmon Falls Dam
Salmon Falls Dam is located in the United States
Salmon Falls Dam
Location in Idaho##Location in United States
Country United States
Location Twin Falls County, Idaho
Coordinates 42°12′43″N 114°44′04″W / 42.21194°N 114.73444°W / 42.21194; -114.73444
Purpose Irrigation
Opening date 1910
Owner(s) Salmon River Canal Company
Dam and spillways
Type of dam Concrete gravity arch
Impounds Salmon Falls Creek
Height 217 ft (66 m)
Length 450 ft (140 m)
Creates Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir
Total capacity 230,650 acre⋅ft (284,500 dam3)
Catchment area 1,610 sq mi (4,200 km2)
Surface area 3,400 acres (1,400 ha)
Maximum length 14 mi (23 km)

Salmon Falls Dam is a dam constructed across Salmon Falls Creek in Twin Falls County, Idaho, in the United States. Located about 28 miles (45 km) southwest of Twin Falls, the masonry arch-gravity dam is 217 feet (66 m) high and 450 feet (140 m) long, impounding up to 230,650 acre feet (0.28450 km3) of water in Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir. When full, the reservoir extends for 17 miles (27 km) upstream, encompassing 3,400 acres (1,400 ha). The dam and reservoir control runoff from a drainage basin of 1,610 sq mi (4,200 km2).

The dam was built in 1910 to provide irrigation water storage, and is owned and operated by the Salmon River Canal Company. A secondary purpose is flood control: the dam has spilled floodwaters twice, in 1984 and 2017. Salmon Falls Creek Reservoir is also a popular recreational lake, and is considered one of the best fisheries in southern Idaho.

The dam was the third-largest dam in the world at the time of its construction. It was part of a major reclamation effort which partly failed due less water being available than planned, partly due to unexpected leakage of water through the lava rock used in the dam's construction.

The Milner Dam (1904) was more successful.

The Salmon Falls Tract, the associated reclamation project, was originally termed the Salmon River Tract, and the dam was named the Salmon Dam. That naming "was chosen over Salmon Falls because the project promoters believed it had more appeal, although the dam’s name was changed back to Salmon Falls".

Historic site

Salmon Falls Dam
Nearest city Rogerson, Idaho
Area 10 acres (4.0 ha)
Built 1908–1910
Engineer Andrew J. Wiley
Architectural style Concrete Arch Dam
NRHP reference No. 09000328
Added to NRHP May 15, 2009

The Salmon Falls Dam was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2009. The listing included a contributing building and six contributing structures in addition to the dam itself, on 10 acres (4.0 ha). The dam's engineer was Andrew J. Wiley. The historic listing includes the dam, one building, and seven other structures.


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