BC Hydro’s Wilsey Dam @ Shuswap Falls – REVISITED


BC Hydro’s Wilsey Dam @ Shuswap Falls – is a paradise for photographers and videographers. For anyone who loves waterfalls and raging waters through rugged canyons, this is the place to visit. At a recent visit, we focused on capturing the motion of the water in greater detail.

This time, we applied a bit of a different method to reproduce the slowed motion of the water. Instead of choosing the ‘High Speed Video’ choice from the camera’s menu, we shot the scenes in regular video speed. In post editing, we slowed down the video footage by about 40% and this is what can be seen in this video. Some segments were slowed down to about 10% to show utmost details of the moving water. When shooting in ‘High Speed Video’ setting, no sound is produced thus rendering the footage somewhat useless for public showing. The post editing choice is the best for those who want the real sounds of the roaring water. 

The following video shows a never seen before image overlay showing the original Shuswap River channel before the dam was built. All images and video scenes were shot with Fujifilm’s X-T4 and Panasonic’s DMC300 cameras.


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Wilsey Dam at Shuswap Falls, BC – To Be Decommissioned – BC Hydro plans to decommission the Wilsey Dam and 5.2-MW Shuswap Falls Powerhouse on the Shuswap River, which allows salmon access to historical spawning habitat in the river. 

The facility was built in 1929 by West Canadian Hydro Electric Corporation. The BC Power Commission succeeded the corporation, which, in turn, became BC Hydro. The concrete dam was built at the site of the original 21-m-high Shuswap Falls, while the spillway channel was blasted through solid rock immediately to the north. Initially, the facility used only water available in the Shuswap River, without a storage reservoir (run-of-the-river). The Shuswap River flows powered this 4,000-hp generating unit. In 1942, a second dam was constructed at the outlet of Sugar Lake to create storage and increased generating potential. This new dam allowed for another 4000-hp generating unit at Shuswap Falls.