Annual barnacle scraping of the large lock

During the annual pump-out of the large lock at the Ballard Locks, a group of volunteers scrape the barnacles off the passageways to make it easier for salmon smolt to pass through in the spring during their annual migration.

“It is very hard work. It’s cold and wet and smells bad too,”  the video text reads. “The smolt appreciate it. So do the crows.”

It’s thankless work, but apparently, the “volunteers” love it. Check out this video of this week’s barnacle scraping:

There’s still an opportunity to get a special tour while the big lock is emptied — the final behind-the-scenes presentations will be tomorrow (Nov. 16) at 10am and 2pm.




10 thoughts to “Annual barnacle scraping of the large lock”

  1. Huh.
    I guess you have to scrape the bottom feeders off the infrastructure to keep it safe and functional?
    I wonder if this applies to everything else…

    1. Apparently only some smelly destructive things that attract crows are unwelcome in Ballard. Others are accepted with open arms…and wallets.

  2. This cleaner has no system! It should be rhythmiical work, almost like a meditation, and conserving energy along the way. Thankless work, he says? What about his Union, protecting every hour he is laboring. I would actually love this job, and especially knowing that after my day is done I do not have to go to my daily visit to the gym!

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