The Keeper of the Waters

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Gayle Ciardi, the first woman to serve as a watershed keeper for the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, is the fourth-generation of her family to work on the SFPUC watershed.

The Key to Willow Creek

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Thanks to the efforts of dozens of volunteers, a biologically rich watershed on the Russian River has become one of the newest additions to our state park system.

Looking Ahead on the Napa River

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In our January-March 2007 feature, “Valley of Water and Wine,” we highlight the innovative work of landowners along the Napa River who are initiating restoration projects on the upper reaches of the river. The Rutherford Dust Society, a group of … Read more

The Napa Valley, and a History of Water and Wine

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The Napa Valley was once a place of enormous natural bounty, fed by a vibrant, healthy river teeming with salmon and steelhead. Today, the valley is more famous for its managed bounty of grapes and fine wine. The river, hemmed in by vineyards, has too often been relegated to the status of a waste canal. But now a unique alliance of growers and scientists has come together to give the Napa’s upper reach a chance to regain some of its wildness.

Dance of the Cranes

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The Cosumnes Preserve near I-5 in the Central Valley is a surprising mosaic of flooded rice fields teeming with birds, breached levees creating new forests, and a river reclaiming a landscape.

New Life For The Laguna

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Thirty years ago, few people gave a second thought to the Laguna de Santa Rosa, the North Coast’s largest freshwater wetland. The once-teeming marshland had become a dumping ground. But things are changing, and this complex waterway is finally beginning to recover some of its former glory.

By the Water’s Edge

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The East Bay is home to 44 creeks that drain into San Francisco Bay—from small but well-protected Wildcat Creek in the north to the 700 square miles of Alameda Creek’s watershed to the south.

A History of the Reservoirs of the East Bay

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Lakes aren’t a natural feature of the coast range landscape. But since cities need places to store drinking water, we drowned some valleys for reservoirs. While precious creek habitat was lost, these man-made lakes now draw bald eagles and other wildlife, as well as thousands of human visitors for swimming, fishing, boating and other summer pastimes.