L.A. River Kayak Tour Video

September 13, 2012 § 1 Comment

Damon Nagami posted the video above at NRDC Switchboard. It’s an excellent, enthusiastic video review of just how fun the latest round of L.A. River kayaking tours are. It’s been great to see lots of photos and positive reviews on Facebook (some of which we’ve shared at the L.A. Creek Freak Facebook group page.) Angelenos are enjoying their river.  « Read the rest of this entry »

Family River Bike Tour – Saturday March 5th

February 24, 2011 § 1 Comment

Be GOOD - Support CicLAvia!

As part of the GOOD fundraiser for CicLAvia, Creek Freak author/artist, CicLAvia-ista yours truly Joe Linton will be leading a very fun very family-friendly bike ride and tour of the Los Angeles River. The ride departs at 2:30pm on Saturday March 5th 2011 – from Atwater Crossing – 3229 Casitas Avenue, Atwater Village 90039. We’ll return to the party by 4pm.

The ride is very short – about 1/3 of a mile each way, on very very quiet residential streets – and will visit one of the very nicest parts of the Los Angeles River – lots of ducks, other birds, tall trees, fish, and lush and pleasant place in (nearly) every respect. I’ll talk a little about the history of the river and plans for its future.  « Read the rest of this entry »

Twain Historic Bridges Tours – December 3 and 10

November 24, 2010 § 1 Comment

1927 Seventh Street Bridge over the Los Angeles River - drawing from the Historic American Engineering Record

Starting next week, I am working with Metabolic Studio to host river bridges tours. Make a reservation today! AS OF 12/2/2010 BOTH TOURS ARE FULL – still accepting a few standbys in case of cancellation, though. I am hoping to do a few more of these in 2011!

The Metabolic Studio Twain Tour:
L.A. Creek Freak Historic Bridges Excursion

This December, the Metabolic Studio teams up with L.A. Creek Freak for a new installment in its “The TwainTrolley tours. The December tours will showcase a dozen of Los Angeles’ iconic historic downtown bridges. These monumental City Beautiful bridges, over the Los Angeles River and in Downtown L.A., were built between 1906 and 1932 and represent a hopeful forward-looking moment in the city’s history of growth and expansion. Many of the beautiful concrete-arch spans are targeted for demolition; this tour will spur conversations on the bridges’ significance – past and future.

« Read the rest of this entry »

News and Events – 12 November 2010

November 12, 2010 § 2 Comments

Spotted yesterday: pre-striping markings on the Elysian Valley segment of the L.A. River bike path. They're three short white lines in the foreground of this photo. Bike path officially under construction since mid-2009 officially opens on December 4th - announcement below, more details soon.

RECENT NEWS

> The Daily Breeze reports that West Basin Municipal Water District’s desalination plant in Redondo Beach opens today, Friday November 12th 2010. Creek Freak Conner Everts “would like to see them do more conservation, reclamation, and then decide if they need a desal plant.”

> At Spouting Off, Heal the Bay’s Mark Gold reports on promising regional water board votes and efforts to reduce trash in local waters. See also HtB’s Ban the Bag rally below.

> Guess the animals and win a poster from L.A. Stormwater. Deadline is next Wednesday November 17th 2010.

> Will Campell bikes the Arroyo Seco and shoots another great riders-eye-view video.

> L.A. Times Greenspace looks into scary drinking water issues in California’s San Joaquin Valley.

> Congratulations to The City Project’s Robert García on being awarded the American Public Health Association’s Presidential Citation!

UPCOMING EVENTS

> Bike the Los Angeles River from Griffith Park to Long Beach this Sunday November 14th 2010, departing at 7:30am from the Autry Museum. Details at Biking in L.A.

> Heal the Bay invites you to a rally to Ban the Bag – at 8:30am on Tuesday November 16th 2010 supporting the L.A. County Board of Supervisors as they vote to ban plastic bags in county unincorporated areas. Check here for details.

> On Thursday, November 18th 2010 at 7pm, the Arid Lands Institute at Woodbury University presents Morna Livingston speaking on Steps To Water: The Ancient Stepwells of India. It’s part of the lecture series: Excavating Innovation: The History and Future of Drylands Design. The free public talk takes place at Fletcher Jones Auditorium, Woodbury University, 7500 Glenoaks Boulevard, Burbank 91510.

> On Saturday November 20th 2010 from 9am-1pm, the Elysian Valley Neighborhood Council, Council President Garcetti, and L.A. County Public Health host a free Health Fair. The event takes place at the Elysian Valley Recreation Center (1811 Ripple Street, L.A. 90039) and includes a free raffle for a new bicycle, courtesy of the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition.

> The Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation is holding its monthly Ballona Wetlands Community Open House with tours Sunday November 21st from 9:30-1:00. Guided tours leave at 10am, 11am, and 12 noon. Meet at the Fiji Gateway, 1320 FIji Way in Marina del Rey 90292, across from Fisherman’s Village.

> On Sundays November 28th and December 5th 2010, Jenny Price leads the All-Valley L.A. River Thai Noodles & Cuban Sweets Tour. It goes from the start of the L.A. River in Canoga Park to Griffith Park, and includes the Great Wall of Los Angeles mural on the walls of the Tujunga Wash. Tours go 8:30am-4pm, click here for info and to sign up.

> At 12noon on Saturday December 4th 2010 the Elysian Valley portion of the L.A. River Bike Path will officially open. To emphasize the shared nature of the facility, it’s being called the L.A. River Pedestrian/Bike Path.  Creek Freak will post more event information here soon!!

> Duarte dedicates its Encanto Park Bioswale and Outdoor Nature Classroom on Tuesday December 7th 2010 at 9am. Encanto Park is located at 751 Encanto Parkway, Duarte 91010.

Ballona Wetlands Symposium - December 8th

> On Wednesday December 8th 2010 the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission will host a free public Ballona Wetlands Science and Research Symposium. It takes place from 8:30am-5:30pm at University Hall 1000, Loyola Marymount University, 1 LMU Drive, LA 90045. For info and to rsvp email Karina Johnston kjohnston [at] santamonicabay.org

News and Events – 22 August 2010

August 21, 2010 § Leave a comment

RECENT NEWS 

> The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has a new video (above) 0n Stormwater Runoff 101, featuring shots of the Elmer Avenue project profiled here earlier. The shots of the trash boom on Ballona Creek are pretty scary! Overall it’s an excellent video, though I wish they didn’t call storm drains “sewers.” (Thanks to In the Watershed

>Last Wednesday, August 18th, 2010, KCRW 89.9fm radio’s Which Way L.A.? ran an episode entitled Navigating the Los Angeles River. The program features Los Angeles City Councilmember Ed Reyes and George Wolfe of river expedition fame. The radio program is available for online listening here. Also in Shipping News: LAist reports about a petition floated for boating access to the river: register your name on the online petition here

Click on image to go to Save Los Angeles River Open Space for larger images.

> See handsome new  renderings of the L.A. River Natural Park  at the Save L.A. River Open Space website. It’s a watershed park proposed for the site currently known as Studio City Golf and Tennis. See creek freak’s backgrounders on this struggle here and here

> The L.A. Times reported yesterday that endangered steelhead remain endangered. This is good news: steelhead, an anadromous fish once abundant in local rivers and creeks, will remain protected by the federal Endangered Species Act. Recommended reading: creek freak’s coverage of Fish in the L.A. River.

> Tiny new feature: we’ve added a Tweet button for posting our articles to Twitter. The button now appears at the bottom of each post.  Follow us at Twitter at @LACreekFreak

UPCOMING EVENTS 

> Jenny Price’s Hidden L.A. Los Angeles River Tours are coming up August 29th, September 4th, September 12th, and September 26th. Keep up with them by liking them at their Facebook page. You may get to actually drive in the river!

> Coastal Cleanup Day – takes place Saturday September 25th 2010. The event includeslots of clean-ups on local creeks and rivers . 

CicLAvia route for walking and biking on car-free streets in October

> CicLAvia – pronounced “seek-law-vee-uh” – a car-free 7.5-mile open streets festival taking place on October 10th 2010 (that’s 10-10-10) – will include the historic Gothic-Revival 1931 4th Street Bridge. Read more about CicLAvia here and more about the 4th Street Bridge on their list of 10 historic buildings along the 10-10-10 route. Self-promotion confession – Creek Freak Joe Linton is way-involved in this not-especially river-related effort – and has been writing various top 10 lists at the CicLAvia site.

News and Upcoming Events – December 3 2008

December 3, 2008 § Leave a comment

Look ma, I’m a consolidator!

Disturbing Photos of Los Cerritos – Viewer Discretion Advised – Long Beach Press Telegram coverage of county maintenance crews vacuuming up tons of debris from the Los Cerritos Wetlands.  Shocking photos by Jeff Gritchen. Perhaps we should send the Green Gorilla out there, or, even better yet, prevent that trash from getting in our rivers by reducing its sources.  Perhaps banning styrofoam would be a good start. (thanks Curbed LA)

The Aquarium of the Pacific new watershed environmental exhibition, classroom, and native garden

At the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach: new watershed environmental exhibition, classroom, and native garden! (click on photo for Aquarium website)

Aquarium of the Pacific’s New Watershed Exhibit – Los Angeles Times blogger Louis Sahagun profiles the Long Beach aquarium’s newest and greenest exhibit with a three-dimensional model of the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers.  The content sounds great, and it’s all wrapped up in a LEED-certified green building.  I am hoping to take some neices and nephews down there over the holidays for an on-the-ground review – keep your RSS tuned to LA Creek Freak.

Duarte Approves San Gabriel River Greenway Project – Cities of Duarte and Azusa, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the RMC (Lower Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers and Mountains Conservancy) are working together to move forward with the El Encanto Nature Trail along the upper San Gabriel. I only wish the Pasadena Star News coverage didn’t use the unfortunate phrase “paving the way.” 

Beginnings of the Verdugo Wash Greenway?City of Glendale approves community garden site along the Arroyo Verdugo.

Piscine Pasadena Project Procures POWER PrizePasadena Now reports that the Central Arroyo Seco Stream Restoration project, which restored habitat for the threatened Arroyo Chub, was honored by Public Officials for Water and Environmental Reform (POWER.)  Kudos to the city of Pasadena and the Arroyo Seco Foundation!  They deserve a round of applause.

Upcoming Meetings and Tours:

The city of Los Angeles and the Army Corps of Engineers invite you to a River Update Meeting on Thursday December 4th (that’s tomorrow) from 5:30pm to 8:30pm at the Metropolitan Water District Board Room at 700 North Alameda Street, LA 90012 (easy transit access – next to Union Station.)  First half of the meeting is on LA city projects, second half is on the parallel Army Corps’ Los Angeles River Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study.  (Note: Apologies for my previously incorrectly announcing that this meeting would include an EPA navigability hearing.  It won’t.  The navigability stuff is scheduled not for December 16th… I will let you know more details on that meeting when I get them.)

Creak Freek’s Joe Linton will lead a mini-tour of the Los Angeles River this Saturday December 6th.  Departs promptly at 2:30pm (arrive at 2:15pm) at Los Angeles State Historic Park (easy transit access – Metro Gold Line Chinatown Station.)  The car caravan tour will last about 2 1/2 hours, touching down at four sites from lush and scenic Elysian Valley to the concrete Arroyo Seco Confluence to the new state park at the Cornfields.  Costs $10 for Students, $20 for general public.  Organized by Alexis Lantz, UCLA School of Urban Planning.  Space limited – as of right now there are only a few more slots available.  For info and to rsvp email alexislantz [at] gmail.com

Jenny Price leads Friends of the Los Angeles River’s first tour of the Lower Los Angeles River this Sunday December 7th.  Bus departs from the River Center at 9am.

The city of Los Angeles is hosting a couple of public hearings about the River Improvement Overlay zone (called the RIO and reviewed by Creek Freak here.)   These take place on Friday December 12 at 12 noon in Van Nuys, and Monday December 15th at 8am at City Hall.

Urban Photo Adventures Los Angeles River tour December 13 and 14

Urban Photo Adventures Los Angeles River tour December 13th and 14th

Urban Photo Adventures hosts a photo safari through the gritty industrial underbelly of the mighty Los Angeles River on Saturday and Sunday December 13th and 14th. “New Lousy Economy Pricing!” Well organized and highly reccommended and docented by author/illustrator/blogger Joe Linton.  Creek Freak reviewed here and posted more photos here.  Great recent images and rave reviews at Urban Photo Adventures site.

And don’t miss the downtown Los Angeles Library’s ongoing “L.A. Unfolded” historic map exhibit (reviewed here.)  It’s up now and continues through January 22nd 2009.

Recent News, Upcoming Events 2008 October 30

October 30, 2008 § Leave a comment

A sporadic consolidation of news and events designed to appeal to the discriminating tastes of local creek freaks:

The endangered Arroyo Toad (public domain photo from Wikipedia)

The endangered Arroyo Toad (public domain photo from Wikipedia)

Amplexus is the technical term for toad nooky. KPCC environmental reporter Ilsa Setziol blogs on amphibian species found in local mountain waterways.

Jenny price recently became an artist. Accidentally.  Price, a person who can really write about urban nature, blogs on the need for artists’ imagination to reconnect our populace with our local rivers.  Creek Freaks should get hip to her role as an urban ranger, read Thirteen Ways of Seeing Nature in L.A., and sign-up for LA River tours that she leads.

Anahuak is “not just about soccer anymore,” Macias said. “It’s about making good citizens. That’s why I feel satisfaction. Doing this has made me feel that I have a mission.”  The Los Angeles Times reports on Raul Macias, the man behind the youth soccer league that’s revitalizing the Los Angeles River and connecting communities with nature.  (Via The City Project blog.)

I picked up a paddle to make a point about protecting the integrity of our waters.  Threatened with suspension, Los Angeles River kayaker and federal Army Corps of Engineers biologist Heather Wylie pens an editorial for the Los Angeles Times.  (Lest you misinterpret, the Times states that “The opinions expressed are her own and do not reflect the official views of the [Army] Corps. [of Engineers]”)

Upcoming Events:

Election Day is Tuesday November 4th!  Vote like your local creek depended on it.

Come see the city of Los Angeles’ latest proposals for the Cornfield Arroyo Seco Specific Plan at two open house meetings: Thursday November 6th at 6pm at Ann Street School and Saturday November 8th at 10am at Goodwill.

Los Angeles City Council President Eric Garcetti invites you to “A Day on the River” on Saturday November 8th from 9am to 11:30am at Crystal Street Bicycle Park in Elysian Valley.

Urban Photo Adventures hosts a Los Angeles River photography tour on November 8th and 9th.  Includes presentations by blogger, author and procrastinator Joe Linton.

The city of Los Angeles’ Ad Hoc River Committee meets on Monday November 17th at 3pm at City Hall.

Check out the latest designs for Los Angeles State Historic Park on Thursday November 20th at 6:30pm at the Los Angeles Conservation Corps Clean and Green headquarters.

Friends of the Los Angeles River offers two new tours: Saturday November 22nd bike tour (led by Ramona Marks) and Sunday December 7th lower Los Angeles River bus tour (led by Jenny Price.)

Don’t forget about the downtown Los Angeles Public Library’s map exhibition, which closes January 22nd 2009.

(Thanks to the city of Los Angeles’ river revitalization headlines for posting some of these events, and especially their associated documents.)

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