|Region||Contra Costa County|
|• location||6 mi (10 km) west of Pleasant Hill, California|
|• elevation||1,090 ft (330 m)|
|Mouth||Chelsea Wetlands, San Pablo Bay|
|7 ft (2.1 m)|
|• left||Duncan Creek|
|• right||North Creek, Fana Creek|
Pinole Creek is a stream in western Contra Costa County, in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, California.
The creek has one of the last primarily undeveloped watersheds in the Bay Area.
The headwaters of Pinole Creek are in the Briones Hills on Costa Peak, within the western area of Briones Regional Park. It flows 10 miles (16 km) westerly through the towns of Pinole and El Sobrante, to its river mouth at the Chelsea Wetlands in Hercules on San Pablo Bay. Its mouth is 4 miles (6.4 km) east of Point Pinole.
The name Pinole is from the Spanish term for "parched corn", which the Mexicans ground for eating. 17,000 acres (69 km2) that included Pinole Creek was granted to Don Ignacio Martinez, a Commandant of the San Francisco Presidio. The land grant was initially known as El Rancho de La Nuestra Sonora de Merced, and later renamed Rancho El Pinole. Martinez built the first adobe in Pinole Valley and brought his family to settle the property with livestock and orchards.In 1823, a Mexican land grant for
The upper watershed contains large areas of open space and managed grazing lands, with ranching and agricultural activities, and residential equestrian properties. The lower watershed contains the historic Old Town District of Pinole, and suburban neighborhoods in Pinole, El Sobrante, and Hercules. The watershed follows the regional geologic northwest–southeast orientation, similar to the orientation of the Berkeley Hills, and is located just northeast of the Sobrante Ridge.
The watershed is approximately 39.6 square miles (103 km2) in area, extending from headwaters on Costa and Duarte Peaks in the Briones Hills, northwest to the San Pablo Bay just east of Wilson Point. The average annual rainfall for the Pinole Creek watershed is 610 mm (24 in), with 90% falling between November and April. There are twelve minor, locally named tributaries and the gradient is 1%.
In 1965, the Army Corps of Engineers armored the creek channel between Interstate 80 and San Pablo Bay for flood control. However, this removed riparian zone vegetation and tree cover needed for food, shelter, and shade for fish and other wildlife.
Biologists from the East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) have observed Steelhead trout (Oncorhyncus mykiss) in the Pinole Creek watershed of multiple ages. Genetic studies by EBMUD in 1999 suggest that the trout are native Central California stock and not introduced.Perennial flows are jeopardized by water usage in the upper watershed but the creek may have the best trout restoration potential in the East Bay because large portions of the watershed are in open space. However, the I-80 crossing may be a significant obstacle to upstream trout migration.
Pinole Creek supports a mostly native fish assemblage including rainbow/steelhead trout, California roach (Lavinia symmetricus), Sacramento sucker ( Catostomus occidentalis), Threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus), Prickly sculpin ( Cottus asper ). Mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis) and Common carp (Cyprinus carpio) are nonnative fishes found predominately in the lower section of Pinole Creek, below Interstate 80.
Native plants are species of the California chaparral and woodlands and riparian forest habitats. Invasive plant species such as Giant reed (Arundo donax), Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius), Yellow star thistle (Centaurea solstitialis), Himalayan blackberry (Rubus discolor) and many others are established along riparian zone sections of Pinole Creek.
El Sobrante is a census-designated place (CDP) in Contra Costa County, California, United States. The population was 12,669 at the 2010 census.
Alameda Creek is a large perennial stream in the San Francisco Bay Area. The creek runs for 45 miles (72 km) from a lake northeast of Packard Ridge to the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay by way of Niles Canyon and a flood control channel.
Kennedy Grove Regional Recreation Area,(KGRRA), also known simply as Kennedy Grove, is located in West Contra Costa County, California at the base of San Pablo Dam. The nearest city is El Sobrante, California. Created in 1967, it contains a three-mile hiking trail with an elevation of 760 feet (230 m). The Grove features many large eucalyptus trees, picnic areas, volleyball nets, playgrounds, and horseshoe pits. Bird watching is popular here because hawks are almost always spotted. Some hikers have reported seeing golden and bald eagles around the reservoir. There is no camping allowed. Parking is $5 with an extra $2 fee for a dog. Dogs have to be on the leash around the lawn but they are allowed off the leash in remote parts of the park. The park is open from 8 a.m. to dusk.
San Francisquito Creek is a creek that flows into southwest San Francisco Bay in California, United States. Historically it was called the Arroyo de San Francisco by Juan Bautista de Anza in 1776. San Francisquito Creek courses through the towns of Portola Valley and Woodside, as well as the cities of Menlo Park, Palo Alto, and East Palo Alto. The creek and its Los Trancos Creek tributary define the boundary between San Mateo and Santa Clara counties.
Briones Regional Park is a 6,117-acre (24.75 km2) regional park in the East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) system, located in the Briones Hills of central Contra Costa County of the San Francisco Bay Area in California.
Wildcat Creek is a 13.4-mile-long (21.6 km) creek which flows through Wildcat Canyon situated between the Berkeley Hills and the San Pablo Ridge, emptying into San Pablo Bay in Contra Costa County, northern California.
San Pablo Creek is an 18.7-mile-long (30.1 km) creek in Contra Costa County, California, United States, which drains the canyon or valley between the San Pablo Ridge and the Sobrante Ridge, parts of the Pacific Coast Ranges east of San Francisco Bay.
Rodeo Creek is an 8.3-mile-long (13.4 km) intermittent stream in western Contra Costa County, California running through the town of Rodeo to San Pablo Bay.
Miller Creek is a 7.6-mile-long (12.2 km) stream in eastern Marin County, California, United States. It originates on Big Rock Ridge and empties into San Pablo Bay east of Marinwood. A middle school called Miller Creek Middle School was named after the creek and is home to 6th, 7th, and 8th graders.
Alhambra Creek is a stream in Contra Costa County, in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area in northern California.
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors is the governing body for Contra Costa County, California in the San Francisco Bay Area's East Bay region. Members of the Board of supervisors are elected from districts, based on their residence.
The Briones Hills form a low mountain range in western Contra Costa County, in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area, California, United States.
Chelsea Wetlands is a riparian marsh on lower Pinole Creek and a tidal wetland at its mouth on San Pablo Bay, in Contra Costa County, northern California. It is located within the city of Hercules, in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area.
Rancho Boca de la Cañada del Pinole was a 13,316-acre (53.89 km2) Mexican land grant in present-day Contra Costa County, California given in 1842 by Governor Juan Alvarado to María Manuela Valencia. The name means "Mouth of the Pinole Valley" in Spanish. The rancho located between present-day Martinez, Pleasant Hill, Orinda, and Lafayette.
Adobe Creek is a 14.2-mile-long (22.9 km) northward-flowing stream originating on Black Mountain in Santa Clara County, California, United States. It courses through the cities of Los Altos Hills, Los Altos, and Palo Alto. Historically, Adobe Creek was perennial and hosted runs of steelhead trout entering from southwestern San Francisco Bay.
Permanente Creek is a 13.3-mile-long (21.4 km) stream originating on Black Mountain in Santa Clara County, California, United States. It is the namesake for the Kaiser Permanente health maintenance organization. Named by early Spanish explorers as Arroyo Permanente or Rio Permanente because of its perennial flow, the creek descends the east flank of Black Mountain then courses north through Los Altos and Mountain View culminating in southwest San Francisco Bay historically at the Mountain View Slough but now partly diverted via the Permanente Creek Diversion Channel to Stevens Creek and the Whisman Slough in San Francisco Bay.
Hale Creek is a short stream originating in the foothills of Los Altos Hills, California in Santa Clara County, California, United States. Its source is in the Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve upstream and east of Neary Quarry. The creek flows northeasterly 4.6 miles (7.4 km) through the cities of Los Altos Hills, Los Altos, and Mountain View before joining Permanente Creek.
Marsh Creek is a stream in east Contra Costa County, California in Northern California which rises on the eastern side of Mount Diablo and flows 30 miles (48 km) to the Sacramento–San Joaquin River Delta at Oakley, California, near Big Break Regional Shoreline. The creek flows through Marsh Creek State Park (California), where water is impounded to form Marsh Creek Reservoir, then through the city of Brentwood, California.
Corte Madera Creek is a short stream which flows southeast for 4.5 miles (7.2 km) in Marin County, California. Corte Madera Creek is formed by the confluence of San Anselmo Creek and Ross Creek in Ross and entering a tidal marsh at Kentfield before connecting to San Francisco Bay near Corte Madera.
San Tomas Aquinas Creek, known locally as San Tomas Aquino Creek, is a 16.5-mile-long (26.6 km) stream that heads on El Sereno mountain in El Sereno Open Space Preserve in Saratoga, California in Santa Clara County, California, United States. It flows north through the cities of Saratoga, Monte Sereno, Los Gatos, Campbell, Santa Clara and San Jose before its confluence with the Guadalupe Slough in south San Francisco Bay.