By Anne Moore
Western Wisconsin Conservation Council (WWCC) hosted a new dam construction tour at Knutson Family Farms in Beldenville, Wis. Over 25 attendees learned about the benefits of this flood control dam and the process to construct one.
This project took about four years to complete. This flood control structure was originally initiated by the farm’s neighbor, who has a house and some field area just below it. It was common area for flooding and a hassle for both farms to clean up after flooding.
Knutson’s received funding from federal MRBI program and some county money. Since the dam has gone up, they have dropped from 159 cfs to 12.8 cfs. The decision was made to dig deeper to allow for more sediment storage. The dam should last about 30 years or longer if properly cared for, including a 15-year maintenance program. The biggest issue will be keeping trees off the dam.
The farm did all the clearing of trees. Many trees were over 100 ft. high and required a lot of man hours.
“It’s a discovery process,” Larry Knutson, landowner said. “We’re still learning.”