Tag Archives: creek

San José Floats On the Backs of Salmon

In The Guadalupe River and the Hidden Heart of San José, Eric Simons writes in the latest Bay Nature magazine about my beloved and trash-choked Guadalupe River and its system in the Santa Clara Valley. The interviewee, Roger Castillo, has showed the writer around the city where salmon, whom I never see in my stretch of the Guadalupe, are living in the storm drains of the freeway system. I found this astoundingly poetic. Homeless fish living under the freeway because they can’t afford the river! Thanks, successful people!

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Photo by Andrea Laue of the storm channel along the Guadalupe Trail facing Park Avenue from San Fernando Street. I disagree with the sanitization and happy color but it’s a good picture.

The article is worth a read no matter where you live. If it smashes some preconceptions about Silicon Valley, that’s a bonus. There are a lot of us in this town who would love to see the freeways, semiconductors and banks vanish with their neonazi brogrammer operators and have our cheapass stonefruit and goats back.

Those moved to help the river can sign up to clean it with the 222 Crew of South Bay Clean Creeks Coalition, a local organization with community-based anarchy leadership. Make it a punishment for when your kids are on their phone too much!

In related news, I recently looked and found out that people living downtown such as the Washington “Goosetown” and Reed neighborhoods use groundwater, so it’s in everyone’s best interest not to trash the river.

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Guadalupe River during Pineapple Express 1.17

Here are some photos of the Guadalupe River taken from the Virginia bridge in downtown San José on 11 and 12 January 2017. The river has risen during the “pineapple express” that has made major problems for Santa Cruz, Hollister and Gwairnville, to name a few. These are photos of the spillway, in fact, full to the ramp from the expansion of the river from the levee at west where it remains confined during most of the year. One begins to wonder why Coyote, which flows admirably for a creek, is a creek, when Guadalupe is a river, and flows no better than a creek.

Here is the spillway facing south on Wednesday, Harliss St at east:

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In all photos if you look close you can see the highwater mark in the grass from the early morning when it was still raining. At 3pm when the photos were taken each day, the water has slowed its roll. I wish I could’ve photographed the river form above by the lurid streetlight at 6AM when I drove up onto the 680 ramp and could see the river really moving in the rain, at its peak volume.

Here’s Wednesday facing north:

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Here’s Thursday to the south at about the same time and the same angle as Wednesday:

20170112_152506Only wish I’d picked up even more trash than I had all autumn thanks to you asshole landlords and gentrifiers making sure that our own neighbors can’t afford housing. One fun thing is that a lot of people were out just looking at the river same as me. A chance to get to know your neighbors, pendejos!

One not fun thing is the continued streak of uncritical incompetence on the part of the Murky News, who without a second thought parroted the grossly irresponsible suggestion by NOAA themselves that the drought in California is “over.” HELLO. You reading this just bought a bag of almonds grown with thousand year-old water drilled out of a mile-deep well in Tulare to make a salad that’ll impress your yuppie mother in law. That doesn’t refill with four inches of rain. Incidentally, KCSM played “I’ve Known Rivers” this morning…

This incompetent call shows the idiocy of our water supply measurements in California, which favor surface levels in reservoirs (luxury items) rather than considering the TRUE hydrological realities of local aquifers. In any case, California has no “drought;” we are a dry state and we use our water stupidly including paving the whole state so the rain can’t soak in and gets piped into the ocean. Break some pavement up today!