Bike Ride on the San Luis Rey River

July 20, 2011 § 2 Comments

Rex on the San Luis Rey River bike path in Oceanside

Last week, my friend Rex and I bicycled from San Clemente to Oceanside… where we stumbled onto the San Luis Rey River and biked up its 7.2 mile San Luis Rey Trail bike path. I confess that I don’t know a lot about the San Luis Rey River, and most of the San Luis Rey’s flow wasn’t all that visible in the thick riparian foliage… willows, sycamores, and more… but there’s plenty of good information online regarding its watershed« Read the rest of this entry »

Cool New L.A. River Videos

June 20, 2011 § 5 Comments

Two recent videos showing off some fun aspects of the Los Angeles River: Above is Will Campbell’s time-lapse Fathers Day exploration of the “East Bank” of the L.A. River’s Glendale Narrows. Campbell cruises the north/east side of the river from the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge to nearly the Arroyo Seco Confluence (aka the 110 Freeway/5 Freeway intersection.) Downstream of Fletcher Drive, the area was historically called Taylor Yard. This area isn’t really officially open to the public, but that doesn’t stop creek freaks from exploring it. People are out there walking, biking, fishing, etc. every day.  Check out Will’s blog “[sic]“ for plenty of cool time-lapse stuff, photography, bike stuff, and more.

Below is a video of a nice big L.A. River carp, caught and released. It’s a pretty good size, looks like about 10 pounds, maybe. For more info on L.A. River fish past and present, read this post.

News and Events – 8 January 2011

January 8, 2011 § Leave a comment

Act now to save Arcadia's threatened oaks! Photo by ecotonestudios

RECENT NEWS:

> If you haven’t read Josh’s article yesterday about the urgency of action to prevent the county’s astonishingly wrong-headed plans for burying Arcadia’s oak woodlands – read it and take action! Demolition is scheduled to begin next week. Here’s a set of links of  yesterday’s blogger solidarity day post to save this irreplaceable site: Altadena Hiker, ArcadiaPatchBallona BlogBipedality, Breathing TreatmentChance of Rain, Echoes, Greensward CivitasL.A. Creek Freak, L.A. Eco-Village, L.A. ObservedPasadena AdjacentPasadena Daily Photo, Pasadena Real Estate with Brigham Yen, Slow Water!, The Sky is Big in Pasadena, Temple City Daily Photo and Weeding Wild Suburbia. Thanks also to Sierra Madre Tattler!

> Oiled Wildlife Care Network reports an oil spill in the Dominguez Channel on December 22nd 2010. Their team “recovered three oiled birds:  one Pied-billed grebe, which died, and two American Coots.”  As of January 4th, OWCN reports that  “no responsible party has been identified, and the source of the spill remains unknown.” Full story at link.

> ArroyoLover reports on the drawbacks (pun intended) of new archery range fencing proposed for Pasadena’s Lower Arroyo Seco Nature Park.

> L.A.’s Daily News reports a Shadow Hills incident where a “car raced downhill, bouncing over speed bumps before brushing by horse and rider, spooking them to the curb. [The horse was] injured [and ultimately perished] when she became trapped in a storm drain debris screen[...]. The driver did not stop.” Interestingly the article calls for changes to the storm drain trash grates, but seems to let the criminal speeding driver off the hook. Full story at link.

> If you think L.A.’s La Niña rains were bad, read Circle of Blue‘s reports on disastrous El Niño rains in Colombia and Venezuela.

> The Los Angeles Times has an impressive photo of water churning through the San Gabriel Dam during recent tests. Also at L.A. Times: environmentalists file suit to block Newhall Ranch development imperiling the Santa Clara River. And, further afield, plans for the future health of the Klamath River.

> The Project For Public Spaces has an extensive conference proceedings document that serves as a sort of handbook for waterfront design/place-making. Their top recommendations (as distilled by me) are: multiple destinations, connected by trails for walking and bicycling.

Drastic Declines in World Fisheries - New York Times via Cyborg Vegan Cannibals

>Cyborg Vegan Cannibals has two scary graphs on the precipitous decline of world fisheries. One above and the other at the link. Maybe it’s time to watch Dan Barber’s Ted.com video again. (Thanks to TrueLoveHealth for sharing the CVC link!)

UPCOMING EVENTS

> The city of Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation hosts a Low Impact Development update on Thursday January 20th 2011 at 1pm at their Media Center Offices. Details at L.A. Stormwater Blog.

Short Film on L.A. River Fishing

September 26, 2010 § 4 Comments

Here’s an excellent recent short documentary about fishing in the Los Angeles River. It features Carmelo Gaeta, Camm Swift, Sabrina Drill, and Friends of the Los Angeles River’s Shelly Backlar. I especially enjoyed the footage of biologists Swift and Drill surveying fish species via seine netting technique. « Read the rest of this entry »

Rare fish make a comeback in San Bernadino…last year

June 11, 2010 § 2 Comments

Press Enterprise photo of Santa Ana Speckled Dace. Photo by Rodrigo Peña.

 You could say Creekfreak missed the event horizon, like by a year, on this one!Googling away for info on our local native fish, I came across this Press Enterprise article from last year, about the return of the Santa Ana Speckled Dace to City Creek out in San Bernadino County. Never too late to be psyched about the return of a fish! 

Return of Santa Ana River speckled dace to City Creek surprises biologists

Videos: Whittier Narrows Trash, Sustainable Fish

March 17, 2010 § Leave a comment

It’s a busy week helping put the final touches on the L.A. StreetSummit, so instead of my usual voluminous writings, I am just linking to some videos that I think L.A.’s creek freaks will enjoy. The above video interview with birder Ed Barajas is from my friend Terry Young’s Bug’s Eyes. Though it’s ostensibly about the problems with all the trash that washes into the Whittier Narrows, I was impressed by hearing all those bird calls in the background!

Below is an excellent 20-minute video from TED.com featuring chef Dan Barber on how we raise fish sustainably. It’s very funny, and really makes ecological connections to our food chain.

News and Events – 2 February 2010

February 2, 2010 § Leave a comment

Cheongyecheon creek in Seoul, South Korea - photo: rinux via wikimedia

UPCOMING EVENTS

RECOMMENDED RECENT NEWS

New Elysian Valley Bike Path Getting Asphalt

January 30, 2010 § 9 Comments

Fresh new bike path asphalt behind the Great Heron Gate

The Los Angeles River Bike Path under construction through Elysian Valley is looking more and more complete. Biking past it at Fletcher Drive today, I saw the city’s contractor’s crews putting down its new dark black asphalt surface. The new surface replaces a worn and root-rutted old access road with various dips and cracks.

After the jump are more details about the bikeway construction schedule, and some observations bicycling along the river today.

« Read the rest of this entry »

Kids, do what I say, not what I do!

January 19, 2010 § 4 Comments

Man captures a big one in the LAR. Photo: David Kimbrough. Image linked to LAist

Even though I absolutely love this photo (and the entire sequence, available at LAist here), remember kids(especially you wayward big ones), stay out of our fast-moving waters during and after the rain. Please!

New and Events – 14 September 2009

September 14, 2009 § 1 Comment

Lots going on that many L.A. Creek Freaks will be interested in.

RECENT NEWS:

>There’s a big buzz on many graf-art websites about the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ use of federal stimulus funds to paint out the famous/infamous huge SABER graf-art mural on the west bank walls of the L.A. River downtown. I am not the biggest proponent of graffiti at the L.A. River (I think that some of it is great… but some of it I find kinda frustrating) but this whiting-out project seems pretty pointless to me. There are many greener projects that could have moved forward with those federal monies… which were supposed to create green jobs, no?

>TreePeople has a good-looking new website, including a new blog by their founder Andy Lipkis!

> The Water Wired blog is a great very readable resource for coverage of very fascinating water issues happening all over. Put it in your RSS Reader today! You might want to check out their recent coverage of Mexico City’s water issues from centuries of overpumping and on the New York Time’s coverage of nationwide neglect in enforcement of the federal Clean Water Act. The actual New York Times article by Charles Duhigg Clean Water Laws Are Neglected, at a Cost in Suffering is here. Duhigg was interviewed on Demoncracy Now earlier today.

>Mark Gold penned an editorial California’s water reform legislation is all wet that ran in the September 8th 2009 L.A. Times. Gold’s Spouting Off blog is also a great read.

Inglewood Gate - click for article and larger image (Photo: Bill Campbell)

Inglewood Gate - click for article and larger image (Photo: Bill Campbell)

>Bill Campbell at Metblogs shows off Ballona  Creek’s beautiful new Brett Goldstone gate at the bike path entry point at Inglewood Avenue. Bike over and check it out!

>The “eecue” site has posted even more great photos of the downtown Los Angeles L.A. River bridges.

>The L.A. City stormwater program’s blog “L.A. Team Effort” details the city’s plans to use $30M in Proposition O funding to upgrade city Santa Monica Bay stormdrain dry weather diversions. During dry months the city sends the trickle of urban runoff from many stormdrains into its sewage treatment plans. This prevents contaminated runoff from getting into rivers and oceans during the summer – when recreational usage is highest. 

>The Malibu Times reports that officials are investigating an unexplained recent fish die-off at Malibu Creek (via the On Water blog.) 

UPCOMING EVENTS – lots to choose from this Saturday!:

>The Ballona Institute is looking for volunteers at a Ballona Wetlands clean-up and restoration event this Saturday September 19th from 9am to 12noon. For information, send an email to massa30 [at] gmail [dot] com.

>The free Frogtown Art Walk takes place this Saturday September 19th from 4pm to 10pm.

>Lots of great creek, river and beach sites to choose from on Coastal Clean-Up Day this Saturday September 19th from 9am to 12noon at more than 70 locations in Southern California!

>Food and Water Watch hosts a talk by Bolivian water activist Marcela Olivera – Saturday September 19th at 4pm. Details here in our earlier post.

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