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Pouring it on: Kurobe Dam's gates opened for tourists in Japanese Alps

Water pours from Kurobe Dam in the town of Tateyama, Toyama Prefecture, on June 26, 2019. (Mainichi/Kenji Konoha)

TATEYAMA, Toyama -- The floodgates of Kurobe Dam in central Japan were opened on June 26 to mark the start of the summer sightseeing season, with a torrent of water flowing from the structure to the delight of tourists.

According to Kansai Electric Power Co., the operator of Japan's tallest dam at 186 meters, the annual opening of the gates began in 1961 in a bid to maintain the beautiful scenery of Kurobe Gorge beneath the reservoir, which is a popular sightseeing spot where water levels can run low in summer.

Some 15 tons of water per second is being released from the dam, which holds about 200 million tons of water. The flow will be reduced to 10 tons per second from Aug. 16.

The dam's gates will be opened from morning till early evening every day until Oct. 15.

(Japanese original by Shun Morino, Toyama Bureau)

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