BLOG #207: Ambuklao Dam

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Ambuklao Dam

In brief, Ambuklao Dam or Ambuklao Hydroelectric Plant is one of the oldest dams in the Philippines.  This is located at Bokod, Benguet.  The start of construction of this dam was in 1948.  It uses the Agno River (the fifth largest river system in the Philippines) to power up to 105 megawatts of electricity.  This is 36 kilometer from Baguio City.

Back in the day, Ambuklao Dam is the biggest dam in the Far East.  It is also the highest dam ever built in the 1950s.  It towers 129 meters and spans 452 meters.  Each of the eight spillways is 127 meters high and it is 12.5 meters by 12.5 meters.  

Gross storage capacity is 327,170,000 cubic meters and usable storage capacity of 258,000,000 cubic meters. The drainage area measures 686 square kilometers and the area is 11 km long.

It was then under President Manuel Roxas that it was decided to make a dam. In 1948, the president together with the National Power Corporation and Westinghouse International, the area was prepared for the power program.  It was not until after two years later did the project start.  It was then under President Elpidio Quirino that the dam was started.  Six years later, the dam construction was completed.  It was under President  Ramon Magsaysay when the dam became fully operational on  December 23, 1956.


I was browsing through my collection of pictures and saw the photos taken by my brother when they went to Bokod to have their medical outreach program in that area.  He borrowed my camera that day and I am sharing some of his photos here.

My first time to visit Ambuklao Dam was my first time also to cover a major event.  It was during the rehabilitation of Ambuklao Dam and Binga Dam at that time and SN Aboitiz held a two-day event their.  I was hired as a backup photographer then.  The event organizers also hired local bands and performers like Metamorphosis and also dance troupe of one of the universities here in Baguio.  It was agreed that the pictures I will take will be surrendered at the end of the every day so I have no personal copies from the said event.

My favorite picture from my brother's set during their medical outreach in Bokod is this one:

It was good timing on his part to photograph this bird.  I can't identify it though.  I like the streak of sunlight flare above and behind the bird plus the wonderful scenery below it.

About the author


Loves to travel, nature, hiking, exploring, foodie, photography.

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