Visitors Guide to
Lock and Dam No. 24
Located just north of
the river town of Clarksville at Mississippi mile marker 273.4 this was
the first dam on the upper Mississippi River that was without roller gates
being built exclusively using the highest level of tainter gate technology
available. The curved tainter gates can be pivoted at a number of angles
to block some or all of the flow of water.
main lock is 100 feet wide and 600 feet long with an average rise of 15
feet. Normal pool elevation behind the dam is 449 feet. The movable
portion of the dam is 1,340 feet long and consists of 15 80-foot long
tainter gates. A 2,720 feet submersible earthen dike extends from the
movable dam to the Illinois shore. Listed on the National Register of
Historic Places construction of the lock and dam began in July 1936 and
became operational in March 1940.
and Dam No. 24 is what makes Clarksville famous among Bald Eagle fans. The
lock and dam creates an open ice-free area of water and the churning water
stuns the fish making them easy prey for the eagles. Lock and Dam has
facilities that are open to the public including an observation platform
and picnic tables. A public boat ramp is located just downstream.
Lock and Dam #24 is listed on the National Audubon Society's Great
River Birding Trail. They report that a viewing platform at the
dam provides views of Bald Eagles (mid-November through March,) Ospreys,
and several species of gulls and terns during spring and fall migration.
An annual Bald Eagle Event is held
in late January. Be sure to inquire about the development of two new
birding and interpretive sites in Clarksville at the Holcim Concrete
grounds and Silo Park.
Regional Locks and Dams -
Get more information on the Locks and Dams in the Middle Mississippi
River Valley from Lock and Dam No.19 in Keokuk, Iowa to and Lock and Dam
No. 27 in Granite City, Illinois just north of St. Louis.
Learn more about the