Repairs to the Bartlett Carry Dam were completed last year thanks in large part to the overwhelming generosity of Upper Saranac Foundation supporters, who contributed $300,000 to the first phase of the project.

The immediate repairs focused on the north embankment of the dam. The work finished on time and under the expected budget.

“These repairs assure that the dam will sustain this spring’s snow melt and high water,” said Guy Middleton, USF’s lake manager. “As the snow melts away, we can see that the Dam weathered well, but we also know we are not done.”

Extreme North Country weather and temperature fluctuations can wreak havoc on outdoor infrastructure, and the Bartlett Carry Dam is no exception. Dewatering and unearthing portions of the dam in the fall of 2018 indicated the need to further address additional deterioration. Some structural portions date back to the original 1914 dam.

USF worked over the winter to revise its Emergency Action Plan (EAP) and implemented a Table Top Emergency Response exercise to assure the plan’s effectiveness. An Engineering Assessment Report (EAR), required by the state Department of Environmental Conservation, has been completed. The report, submitted every 10 years, is a thorough analysis and evaluation of the overall safety of the dam. USF complies with DEC Dam Safety standards and follows their required protocols. In addition, USF is working with our engineer to assess priority needs and develop a timeline for additional repairs.

With help from your donations, USF has a reserve set aside for emergency funding if additional repairs are required.

“It’s important, as owners of the Bartlett Carry Dam, to understand maintenance of the dam is an ongoing effort, assuring reliable water levels, and providing safety to those downstream,” Middleton said. “Without the support of the shore owners who fund efforts of the Foundation, none of this would be possible.”