Štěchovice dam and its power plant

The construction of the Štěchovice dam was planned since the beginning of the 1920s as a part of a broader concept of a dam cascade construction on the Vltava river. One of the projects, for example, included the construction of a high embankment dam further upstream, in the bend of the river near the Ztracenka tramp settlement. The construction was to include impressive spillways and generous locks for both ships and rafts. Due to economic crisis, the construction was continuously put off. Interestingly, the project was eagerly supported by the locals and there were even several demonstrations to support the construction of the dam. The locals expected that new employment opportunities at the time of crisis and at least partial protection from annual floods would arise from the construction of the dam. Paradoxically, the construction of the dam resulted in the destruction of the greatest local tourist attraction - Saint John Currents.

The construction of the dam was finally launched in the autumn of 1937 and was accompanied by numerous problems. The construction was impeded by the war, but, as this was a strategic construction, the construction did not cease even in the most difficult war years. In the spring of 1940, the construction site was severely damaged in an unprecedentedly disastrous spring thaw and the construction had to be suspended for several months. The dam was gradually filled in 1943. It is equipped with three mitre lock gates. As the difference in water levels is 20 metres, the use of mitre lock gates is surprising. The lock is still the largest in the Czech Republic. Simultaneously with the dam, a robust pumped storage reservoir was built on the near Homole hill. The construction was finalized in 1947. On the right bank of the dam, there is an information panel on the history and technical parameters of the construction. On the left bank, on the power plant premises, there is a ČEZ (Czech energy conglomerate) information centre, where you can book a tour of the power plant lead by an expert in the field.

Route and transport to the site

Walking:

This site is not suitable for a hike from Slapy due to its remoteness and elevation. The ideal solution is the combination of a car trip and a walk in the vicinity.

Cycling (approx. 10 km):

Golf Slapy - Slapy - Štěchovice / Brunšov. In Brunšov, after you have crossed the bridge across Vltava, take the road on the right bank upstream. After several hundred metres, you will reach the dam with the locks and the information panel. If you fancy a visit to the information centre, turn left in Štěchovice, before you reach the bridge, and go upstream on the left bank. The route to the dam is marked with arrows. As the route is rather busy and goes steeply uphill, the trip is only suitable for experienced cyclists.

By car (approx. 10 km):

Golf Slapy - Slapy - Štěchovice / Brunšov. Park your car in Štechovice and walk to the dam. Cross the bridge across Vltava and take the road on the right bank upstream, follow the road until you reach the locks. From there, you can follow a footpath along the Štěchovice reservoir. The footpath ends after about 1.5 kilometres in a former quarry and you will have to go back, but the walk is still very nice. Before the dam, there is also the Dušno canyon, famous thanks to tireless seekers of the "Štěchovice treasure", a treasure allegedly hidden in the canyon by the Nazis. If you wish to visit the tourist information centre in the power plant, you need to head for the opposite bank. The route is marked with arrows. The walk is very pleasant and undemanding.

GPS coordinates

www.mapy.cz - 49°50'47.234"N, 14°25'7.344"E

Map

Map No. 38 / A, B5, KČT (Czech Tourist Club) series

To view the route in more detail, open the file in a new window.

Info: informační centrum - www.cez.cz/cs/kontakty/informacni-centra/ic-stechovice.html