Salmonid Restoration Federation
31 March - 3 April, 2020
Santa Cruz, California

18 Years of Managing Mountain Bikes, Sediment, and Legacy Logging to Improve Salmonid Habitat

8:30am - 5:00pm
Tour Coordinators:

Aaron Hébert, Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District
Jonathan Owens, Balance Hydrologics

Since 2001, the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District and Balance Hydrologics Inc. have been working to reduce- and monitor- sedimentation from 24 miles of roads and trails in a popular mountain biking open space preserve. Threatened salmonid species are present in the creek system downstream, which was historically impacted by forestry activities in the preserve location. Monitoring the effectiveness of road and trail improvements has been performed through V* sediment pool monitoring and stream- and sediment- gaging. Baseline conditions were measured from 2004 through 2007, and are being remeasured during 2018 and 2019. Aaron Hébert, Water Resources Specialist, and Craig Beckman, Maintenance Supervisor, at Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, and Jonathan Owens, Principal and hydrologist, and Chelsea Neill, P.G. hydrologist, at Balance Hydrologics Inc. will be the presenters.

The day will start with 1.5 hours of presentations and workshop, providing project overview and data methods and analyses. The field tour will head to the San Gregorio watershed and the El Corte de Madera Creek Open Space Preserve. Participants will hike the roads, trails, and bridges that Midpen rebuilt to reduce sedimentation, enter the mainstem of El Corte de Madera Creek, and learn about stream gaging, sediment sampling, and the basic techniques of V* field data gathering that were used.  Topics will include discussions of logging legacy, large-wood jams, sediment rating curves, and natural vs. human-influenced sediment sources. Bring water-resistant/proof shoes/boots, clothing layers, lunch, and water.

Tentative schedule:

8:30-10am Classroom workshop project overview

10-11:30am travel to ECDM Parking Lot (restroom)

11:45am drive to Virginia Mill Trailhead and learn about road restoration

12:30pm brown-bag lunch at the Creek, gaging and sediment sampling

1:00pm-2:00pm V* hands on demonstration

2:00-2:30pm Question and Answers

2:30-3pm Hike Out

3:15pm-4:45pm Drive back

Before the Restoration, mountain biking photo (2001)
Before the Restoration, mountain biking photo (2001). Creek crossing without a bridge.
  • Before the Restoration, mountain biking photo (2001)
  • Road-to-Trail Conversion Photos (2008).
  • Road-to-Trail Conversion Photos (2008)
  • Sediment Sampling Photo (2018)
  • V* Sediment Monitoring Photo (2018)