Huge dam for hydro electric generation in a high-mountain area with a secluded atmosphere
Okutadami dam is a damn huge dam, standing 157 m tall and with a storage capacity of 600 million tons, supporting the largest hydroelectric power station in Japan. Completed in 1960, the station supplies electricity to Kanto and Tohoku regions.
The dam was constructed in response to rising demand for power during reconstruction after the Second World War. At that time, large hydroelectric dams were built one after another and Okutadami dam was one of them. Okutadami Electric Power Museum beside the dam shows precious films shot at the time of its construction.
The dam lake to store water is called Okutadami Lake or Ginzan (silver mine) Lake because there was a silver mine there during the Edo Period. A pleasure cruise is operated from May to November (check beforehand because the service period varies from year to year). The lake is surrounded by 2000 m-tall mountains, in which wild animals such as black bears and Japanese serows live. You can feel the spirit of great nature in the splendid view of this secluded place.
Address: Yunotani-imogawa, Uonuma, Niigata
Phone: 025-795-2750 (Okutadami Kanko Corporation)
Directions: Take Minami-Echigo Kanko Bus bound for "Okutadami Dam via Silver Line" at Urasa Station (one hour and 30 minutes by Shinkansen from Tokyo Station) on the JR Joetsu Shinkansen, and get off at the terminal. (Car) 50 minutes from Koide Interchange on the Kanetsu Expressway.