1. What types of fish can be seen through the visitor viewing windows at the Bonneville Dam?

    • Answer

      Both salmon and steelhead trout can be seen from the Bonneville Visitor Center.

  2. What kind of energy does the Bonneville Dam generate? Who has access to this energy?

    • Answer

      The Bonneville Dam is a hydroelectric dam. The running water from the Columbia River is converted into electrical energy. This inexpensive energy is used to power the region between Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington.

  3. What is the purpose of a fish ladder?

    • Answer

      A fish ladder is used to help fish continue their migration patterns instead of being stopped by the barrier of the dam.

  4. Look at the photo. A lot of water rushes through the Bonneville Dam gates. How much water passes through at one time?

    • Answer

      In the first powerhouse, 96,667 gallons/second of water pass through. This is enough to fill an average three-bedroom home in one second.

  • The Bonneville Dam spans the width of the Columbia River. The Columbia River runs along the boundary between Oregon and Washington, so one side of the Bonneville Dam is in Multnomah County, Oregon, while the other side is in Skamania County, Washington.
  • The Bonneville Dam is hydroelectric, which means that running water is converted into energy. Since 1938, the Bonneville Dam has provided inexpensive electrical energy to the region.
  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers operates and maintains the Bonneville Dam year round.
  • The Bonneville Dam has several fish ladders, a large visitor center, and several viewing windows where salmon and steelhead trout runs can be seen.
Bonneville Dam

series of hydroelectric dams and locks across the Columbia River in the U.S. states of Oregon and Washington.

clean energy

electrical energy that does not pollute the atmosphere, water, or earth.

Columbia River

(1,955 kilometers/1,214 miles) river in western Canada and the U.S., draining into the Pacific Ocean.

fish ladder

series of steps overflowing with water, where fish can migrate upstream around a barrier such as a dam.


having to do with water or water systems.