January 9, 2015
The excavator and payload machine work in tandem to scoop out thousands of cubic yards of clay rich soil. Once dry, the reservoir bed will be quite impermeable. Water flowing in will not seep through it.
This is an expensive but necessary undertaking. In the event that the weekly discharge of water from Los Andes higher up in the mountains is interrupted, it's critical that there's water available to continue watering thousands of orange trees, walnut trees, melons, corn and alfalfa growing on the farm.
There's a palpable sense of anticipation today as the project nears completion.The new gate into the reservoir (visible just behind Ricardo in photo above) is untested, as is the capacity of the enlarged reservoir. The excavators carefully kept in place the wall of the original reservoir to keep water from flowing into the newly excavated section. The sight of Ricardo and Otoño in the pit gives you a sense of scale of the area being expanded.