Ohop Mutual Light Company energized fewer than 20 miles of line in 1921 to serve a dozen or so farms around the Ohop Valley. Today, Ohop Mutual serves thousands of meters across 443 miles of line.
Ohop Valley residents lived a hard life during the early years of electrification. Few amenities existed and travel to the nearest town for supplies was a rugged journey that took many hours.
The depression, as well as the drought in 1929 which severely cut the power from hydroelectric sources, forced Tacoma to start dim-outs for residents of Pierce County. The shortage became so critical that Tacoma appealed to President Hoover, who turned to the Navy. The U.S.S. Lexington arrived at Baker Dock and its boilers supplied a quarter of Tacoma’s power for about 30 days.
Despite these hard times, Ohop Mutual continued to raise capital, build the electric infrastructure, purchase needed equipment, and buy an office.
After World War II, Ohop Mutual began to expand. While some utilities were fighting for territory, Ohop had little competition as Investor Owned Utilities did not want to serve the area – as the costs far out-weighed the financial benefits.
In spite of all the difficulties encountered by building an electric distribution system over the years, Ohop Mutual and its members have stood the test of time.
With Mount Rainier in its backyard and other natural splendors all around, the Ohop service area is small-town, country-junction beautiful. So it can stay that way, Ohop’s directors and staff are committed to providing dependable power at affordable rates.
We can still proudly say we have one of the most reliable, low-cost power rates in the nation. And we will continue to have low-cost power for the next several years thanks to the Regional Dialogue Power Sales Contract that is currently in place until 2028.