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Pocket Creek - Guerneville, CA

The Pocket Canyon Protection Group (PCPG) is a citizen's group of residents of Pocket Canyon which formed to protect Pocket Canyon Creek and the surrounding aquifer and watershed. CCWI is supporting the Pocket Canyon Protection group in conducting citizen monitoring on Pocket Canyon Creek.

Our water quality monitoring program on Pocket Canyon began when a Timber Harvest was being planned on 185 acres of watershed just above the creek. There is a community well located 20 feet from the creek and it is only 15 feet deep.
The slopes above the creek are 70-80% in some areas. The community was very concerned about the possibility of our water quality being affected so we contacted CCWI for some advice.

CCWI suggested establishing a baseline water quality database by monitoring the water upstream and downstream of the proposed Timber Harvest area so that we could identify any degradation caused by the logging operation.

As members of the Pocket Canyon Protection Group (a neighborhood group formed to fight the Timber Harvest ) , the first volunteers were Elizabeth Christie and Lisa Vasse. Doug Vincent took over after about a year and continues the creek monitoring duties. The Timber Harvest Plan was amended and scaled back numerous times before it was finally given the go ahead. We believe that without the threat of water quality issues being easily identified by the creek monitors, the timber operators may have gotten a much more destructive harvest plan approved.

I still enjoy monitoring the creek and get a special thrill when I spot the steelhead trout fingerlings in the pools near my testing sites in the summer.

Site descriptions:

Pocket Canyon Creek along Hwy. 116 about 4 miles from Guerneville towards Forestville
PCC020: 12170 Hwy. 116, downstream of the Inn and the tank in the creek
PCC030: The backyard at 11900 Hwy. 116
PCC040: 50 ft. upstream from bridge along Hwy. 116 at May's Canyon Road

  2002 Data Report/Factsheet  |   2004 Data Report


Pocket Creek Monitoring Plan

Objectives: The focus of this project is to identify pollution sources and problems in water quality, and use data collected to develop fact sheets and educational materials for the general public highlighting best management practices and strategies for reducing pollution.

Data Collection Activities-
Dissolved Oxygen (DO)

When: The project's orientation and initial sampling date was May 30th, 2002.

Why: Parameters were chosen according to general interest to citizen monitors, and relation to erosion impacts. Sites were chosen according to the following criteria:
- Representative of the areas of the Creek for general creek characterization.
- Concerns of water pollution resulting from potential erosion from upstream timber harvests
- Concerns with pollution and flow interference from gravel mine operations
- Accessibility and safely throughout the year, as well as trespassing constraints.

How: The monitoring program is intended to develop baseline characterization data, document water and habitat quality changes over time and to help establish a scientific basis for land use decisions. Sites and parameters were chosen after discussions with local residents.

Pocket Canyon Protection Group Contact: Elizabeth Christie, Doug Vincent


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