Last month- His Majesty the King took a boat trip in the lake of Kaeng Krachan Dam in Phetchaburi Province, where he observed the development of water management in the area. The Kaeng Krachan Dam Project was opened in 1966 by His Majesty the King. It is the country’s first earth dam built across the Phetchaburi River, with a crest length of 760 metres, a height of 58 metres and a crest width of 8 metres. The dam has created a lake covering an area of 45 square kilometres which has a capacity to store 710 million cubic metres of water. As a multi-purpose dam, it benefits cultivation in more than 300,000 rai of land, reduces flood hazards, provides water for consumption during droughts and produces electricity worth 200 billion baht a year.
During the trip, the royal ferry circled around an islet called “Ko Nai Luang”, or King’s island, which His Majesty visited in 1973. Repair work is being conducted at the royal pavilion on the islet. Efforts are also being made to restore natural environment and wildlife on the islet, which was once a mountain but later flooded partly by the construction of the dam. About 30 islets in the lake have been created in the manner. Kaeng Krachan Dam is surrounded by the Kaeng Krachan National Park which was established following His Majesty the King’s concerns for forest encroachments in watersheds of the Phetchaburi River. In 1979 His Majesty the King visited the dam and asked officials concerned to limit logging concessions in the area. Later, the Kaeng Krachan National Park was declared, covering nearly 2,500 square kilometres and has today become a popular recreation area. It consists mainly of rainforests, lakes, caves, waterfalls, as well as abundant kinds of flora and fauna. His Majesty spent about two hours at the Kaeng Krachan Dam before returning to Klai Kangwon Palace in Prachuap.