June 18, 2010 § 6 Comments
A bike-path-side shrine appeared recently on the South County Los Angeles River Bike Trail, adjacent to Cudahy City Park. A small handwritten sign on the fence states:
Any information on workers and How they were driving when My Dad was Killed Please Please CALL ME Alfredo Lopez Weichinger. Help Us Bring Justice. Please. Cell – 805-441-4510. My Dads House – 323-562-1902
Our condolences to the family. L.A. Creek Freak doesn’t have further information. We encourage anyone who does to contact the family.Thanks to Bobby Gadda for the story and photos.
April 16, 2009 § 1 Comment
> The new Cudahy River Park opens along the southeast stretch of the Los Angeles River! What will North East Trees think of next?
> L.A. Streetsblog looks at federal stimulus money going to California bicycle projects – looks promising that funds will go to the lower Arroyo Seco Bikeway.
> Friday-tomorrow noon is your deadline for entering L.A. Creek Freak’s first-ever contest. Win the Audubon Center at Debs Park’s guide to Animals of the Los Angeles River by merely commenting on our blog. Right now the odds are better than 1 in 10. No purchase required. Void where prohibited. Your results may vary.
>Tomorrow, Friday April 17th at 2:30, the City of LA hosts a talk on the revitalization of Seoul’s Cheong Gye Cheong river.
>This Sunday afternoon, April 19th, Long Beach’s Wrigley Area Neighborhood Alliance hosts tours of the Dominguez Gap – a restored wetland park along the lower Los Angeles River. Creek Freak visited the site recently and the wildflowers are blooming beautifully!
>Also this Sunday, April 19th at 3:30pm, Friends of the LA River hosts a walk along the scenic Glendale Narrows stretch of the L.A. River. Meet at Steelhead Park, on Oros Street in Frogtown.
>Support your local bloggers Joe Linton and Damien Newton as we teach you how to blog like we do – plus mucho other useful free stuff on the web at our Internet Skills Class on Tuesdays April 21st and 28th. We teach it again May 4th and 11th.
Spring cleaning opportunities abound:
> This Saturday April 18th at Taylor Yard with North East Trees. Yo! it’s Earth Day!
> Next Saturday April 25th at Taylor Yard with North East Trees and local Obama folk.
>Saturday May 9th at Taylor Yard and many many other sites with Friends of the L.A. River.
>On April 25th and 26th, Urban Photo Adventures leads their Los Angeles River photography tour – see and capture some of the grittiest industrial sites along the mighty Los Angeles.
Bike the Emerald Necklace on the San Gabriel River and the Rio Hondo with the city of El Monte’s Tour of Two Rivers bike rally on Saturday May 16th. Then bike the Los Angeles River on the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition’s River Ride on Sunday June 7th.
November 12, 2008 § 1 Comment
Today was a nice unseasonally warm November day, perfect for some scouting along the Lower Los Angeles River with some great authors. The expedition was organized by Jenny Price who will be leading Friends of the Los Angeles River’s upcoming bus tour of the lower river on December 7th. Creek freak afficionados will remember Jenny price as the author of Thirteen Ways of Seeing Nature in L.A. which is one of the best articles to introduce people to the river and to environmental issues and conundrums in Los Angeles. She also wrote Flight Maps: Adventures with Nature in Modern America and the LA Weekly’s guide to the Los Angeles River in 2001. At the steering wheel was Jared Orsi, author of Hazardous Metropolis: Flooding and Urban Ecology in Los Angeles another excellent book that covers the history of flooding and flood control on the Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers. Jared has been teaching in Colorado for a few years; this year he’s back in town as a visiting professor at Occidental College.
We made visits to the Cornfields, the 6th Street Bridge, Maywood Riverfront Park, Cudahy Park, river wall murals in Paramount, lower Compton Creek, Dominguez Gap, the estuary at Willow Street, and the Golden Shore Wetlands.
At a lot of the sites along the concrete sections of the river, we saw plenty of greenery and birds that were inhabiting temporary sandbars that settle in atop the concrete. These areas are best viewed in the fall before big rains come and wash them out. There were plenty of egrets, gulls, and stilts on the river in Maywood and Cudahy. Unfortunately the earthen-bottom areas aren’t looking quite as good. In anticipiation of winter storms, the county’s crews have been pretty active in bulldozing to clear vegetation that potentially impedes channels’ flood protection capacity. I know that this activity is permitted, and that the county only does half the channel in many areas… and has left a few willow trees standing… but it’s still jarring to me to see the flattened earth where grasses and shrubs had been growing a couple months ago. Jenny Price remarked at how much habitat was lost. The soft-bottom areas of Lower Comton Creek looked as barren as I had ever seen them – though there were some herons and coots taking solace in the small creekside strip of vegetation left. The blight of plastic and polystyrene trash their is even more visually apparent as there’s no vegetation to hide it. The estuary at Willow Street was still very full of life, though one bank looks looked like a vacant lot with a few lonely willow trees.
Today was the lowest tide that I’ve ever encountered at the mouth of the river. Near the Queensway Bay Bridge, muddy earth at the bottom of the riprap walls showed. Sandbar islands showed above the water’s surface along the Catalina Cruises Terminal and Shoreline Park. The Golden Shore Wetlands were showing their tidal influence. They were mostly wet earth, but had nearly no standing water – just a beautiful tree-shaped mass of small rivulets. Nonetheless a great blue heron caught and devoured a small fish while we looked on.
Jared hadn’t visited most of these Los Angeles River sites since work on his book concluded in 2002. I was happy to hear him express a lot of optimism in visiting parks today that had been barren then. The Cornfield was a vacant railyard, now it’s Los Angeles State Historic Park. The Dominguez Gap Wetlands are completed and open. Maywood had a contaminated brownfield that’s now a riverfront park. Cudahy has a line of healthy sycamores and native shrubs along the South County Bike Trail where there had been only vacant right-of-way. Jenny remarked that it looks like Cudahy is the first city to green its entire riverfront (just under 3/4ths of a mile.) In Cudahy we even encountered North East Trees’ crew working on another small linear park that’s slated to open next month. Jared was glad to see that we creek freaks have kept at it and that our efforts are resulting in real change on the ground, bringing green public spaces to a region starved for it.