Downtown Summer Residents

In late September, Dan Holzner dipped his GoPro camera into a deep pool in downtown San Anselmo, and among the thousand photos he shot appeared several rainbow trout. The bars along their sides distinguish them from roach, as does a light tip to the dorsal fin. The crayfish (a non-native crustacean) is probably trying its luck at catching a fish to eat. When the rains come, the trout will move downstream to the ocean, and return later as salmon-sized steelhead. The roach will still be no more than a couple of inches long.

Proposal to Remove Lower Reaches of the Corte Madera Creek Concrete Channel

This proposal was funded by Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed, and presents alternatives to setback walls and berms in Kentfield. These conceptual designs may be analyzed in the EIR that the Flood Control District will prepare for flood management in Ross and Kentfield.

• Removes the channel floor and bank of the channel beside COM athletic fields from the Stadium Way
Footbridge to the downstream end of the channel (approx. 450 lineal feet); removes both channel walls in the downstream 150 feet
• Restores tidal wetland, transition zone, and mud flat habitat to accommodate sea-level rise.

• Removes the channel floor and concrete wall adjacent to KMS if a design acceptable to the Kentfield School District can be developed from the College Avenue Bridge downstream to the Stadium Way Footbridge (approx. 1,400 lineal feet); however, KMS gym sits close to the creek and a wall is required on both sides of the channel in this area
• Requires increased creek capacity at College Avenue, probably by providing two by-pass culverts to carry high flows, one on each side of the existing bridge
• Requires replacing Stadium Way Footbridge (in collaboration with Marin County Parks and Safe Pathways to School)
• Requires modification of a Ross Valley Sanitary District (RVSD) siphon attached to the existing Stadium Way Footbridge

• Removes the channel floor and concrete channel wall on the parking lot side of the creek, extending from the College Avenue Bridge to the new Science-Math-Nursing building bridge (approx. 1,000 lineal feet)
• Provides visual enhancement to core of the COM campus
• Requires replacing the old footbridge leading to the core of campus (SMN building bridge retained)

Project Components: At the present time, the conceptual designs for all three phases assume that the concrete wall on the generally uphill side of the creek across from KMS and several COM parking lots (the left side of the channel, looking downstream) would remain in place because a large RVSD sewer was installed next to the wall when the current channel was constructed. The only exception is the 150 feet furthest downstream, where the sewer leaves the wall and is routed to RVSD’s Kentfield Pump Station. As budgets and designs are developed, the feasibility of moving the sewer in some locations will be studied.

A project of Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed, in cooperation with Geomorph Design, and Walls Land + Water LLC 6.7.2019

So Much Pickleweed, So Little Time

In late March, students from Professor David Larsen’s class pursuing Environmental Studies at CSU East Bay helped plant pickleweed at Creekside Marsh, one of Friends’ habitat enhancement projects. Earlier in the day, the class was given a tour of Corte Madera Creek and a sewer pump station by the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District and the Ross Valley Sanitary District, a funder of the planting project. Photo courtesy of Ross Valley Sanitary District.

Snakes in Love

These two rattlesnakes were photographed in September near Phoenix Lake by Gary Leo

Otter on the Lookout

This lone river otter explored the deep pools at a bend in San Anselmo Creek in Fairfax for about half-an-hour before deciding to go and see what lies beyond the watercress upstream. Photo by Gary Leo. Local otter sightings can being recorded at riverotterecology.org. To view a video by Gary, download: River Otter 6 1.4M

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