Estero Americano, Emptied

The Estero’s rain-swollen waters had recently risen high enough to flood Marsh Road and inundate the launch area.

Now the sandbar that had been blocking the mouth of Estero Americano is breached. Gone is the water that had risen out of the channel and flooded adjacent pastures.

The water level is back to normal with the channel wending its way through the fields. The pastures, recently at the bottom of “Lake Valley Ford” are brown with muck. The air stinks of dairy and poultry waste.

Estero Americano, January 5, 2017

There’s a noticeable current flowing under the bridge, out towards Bodega Bay. Perhaps a strong Pacific swell will soon reseal the mouth of the Estero.

Hopefully the rains forecast for the coming week will wash some of the muck off the pasture grasses and perhaps begin to fill the Estero up again.

4 thoughts on “Estero Americano, Emptied

  1. It would be interesting to see what the landscape would have been like pre – pasture. I suspect it would have been an interesting wet land with vast flora and fauna.

  2. Before it silted up from grazing there were gravel beds and a healthy salmon run. I met a man who talked about growing up on a 300 acre sheep ranch along the Estero about 70 years ago.

  3. Right, Alden. It had been a wetland full of life. Now, sadly, most of the animal life in this area is poultry crowded inside shuttered enormous climate-controlled buildings. I think many are called “free-range” chickens, but in reality they’re inside the buildings. You can smell them, but you cannot see them.

  4. Hi, Mac—

    Right again. A lot of the streams around here were dubbed “Salmon Creek” because of the salmon runs they supported. Once in a while I’ve seen a large steelhead in the Estero, but it’s way too rare these days.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.