Unified Interior Regions

California

The Southwest Region includes California, Nevada, and Arizona. The Regional Office, headquartered in Sacramento, provides Center oversight and support, facilitates internal and external collaborations, and works to further USGS strategic science directions.

States L2 Landing Page Tabs

Filter Total Items: 380
Date published: January 1, 2008
Status: Completed

Does Pleasure Point Need A Seawall?

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study of Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz, California, from 2005-2007.

Date published: January 1, 2005
Status: Completed

Should Englebright Dam Be Removed?

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study from 2001-2004, on Englebright Dam and the science behind its removal.

Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Tsunami Hazards in the Santa Barbara Channel

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's study of tsunami hazards in the Santa Barbara Channel from 1993-2003.

Contacts: Ray Sliter
Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Big Sur Coastal Landslides

Information about USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center studies on coastal landslides in the Big Sur area

Date published: January 1, 2004
Status: Completed

Oceanography Beyond the Golden Gate

Information about the USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center's oceanographic studies offshore of San Francisco Bay, from 1989-2003.

Date published: November 15, 2001
Status: Archived

SAGEMAP

A GIS Database for Sage-grouse and Shrubsteppe Management in the Intermountain West

Contacts: Steve Hanser
Date published: October 1, 2001
Status: Completed

Water-Quality Sampling at Five Hydrologic Benchmark Stations in the Western United States

The Hydrologic Benchmark Network (HBN) was established in 1963 to provide  Swiftwater Creek, MT long-term measurements of streamflow and water quality in areas of the United States that are minimally affected by human activities. Historically, the HBN has used a fixed-interval sampling strategy, however other more robust sampling strategies are now available. Trend networks, for example, can...

Date published: January 1, 1999
Status: Completed

Mapping Shipping Hazards in San Francisco Bay

Information about the 1997-1998 study by USGS Pacific Coastal and Marine Science Center, to map the floor of San Francisco Bay in order to reveal the bay's shipping hazards.

Contacts: Peter Dartnell
Filter Total Items: 501
Date published: January 1, 2017

Bathymetry--Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents data for bathymetry for several seafloor maps of the Offshore of Gaviota Map Area, California. The GeoTiff is included in "Bathymetry_OffshoreGaviota.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7TH8JWJ. These data accompany the pamphlet and map sheets of Johnson, S.Y., Dartnell, P., Cochrane, G.R., Hartwell...

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 ocean-currents projections: 20-year storm in Orange County

Model-derived ocean current velocities (in meters per second) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS

Date published: January 1, 2017

Bathymetry--Offshore of Point Conception Map Area, California

This part of DS 781 presents data for bathymetry for several seafloor maps of the Offshore of Point Conception Map Area, California. The GeoTiff is included in "Bathymetry_OffshorePointConception.zip," which is accessible from https://doi.org/10.5066/F7QN64XQ. These data accompany the pamphlet and map sheets of Johnson, S.Y., Dartnell, P.,...

Date published: January 1, 2017

Near-surface wind fields for San Francisco Bay--historical and 21st century projected time series

To support Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) in the San Francisco Bay (v2.1), time series of historical and 21st-century near-surface wind fields (eastward and northward wind arrays) were simulated throughout the Bay.
While global climate models (GCMs) provide useful projections of near-surface wind vectors into the 21st century, resolution is not sufficient enoug

Date published: January 1, 2017

Water pressure/depth and turbidity time-series data from CHC16 Marsh and mudflat stations in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh, California

Files contain hydrodynamic and sediment transport data for the location and deployment indicated. Time-series data of water depth, velocity, turbidity, and temperature were collected in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh as part of the San Francisco Bay Marsh Sediment Experiments. Several instruments were deployed in tidal creek, marsh, mudflat, and Bay locations, gathering data on

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 flood-hazard projections: 20-year storm in Orange County

Geographic extent of projected coastal flooding, low-lying vulnerable areas, and maxium/minimum flood potential (flood uncertainty) associated with the sea-level rise and storm condition indicated.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosi

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: 20-year storm in Orange County

Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0 for So

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: 100-year storm in Los Angeles County

Projected Hazard: Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
Model Summary: The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise %2

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 flood-hazard depth and duration projections: average conditions in Orange County

Maximum depth of flooding surface (in cm) in the region landward of the present day shoreline that is inundated for the storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario indicated. Note: Duration datasets may have occasional gaps in open-coast sections.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of k

Date published: January 1, 2017

Water pressure/depth, velocity, and turbidity time-series data from CHC13 Tidal creek stations in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh, California

Files contain hydrodynamic and sediment transport data for the location and deployment indicated. Time-series data of water depth, velocity, turbidity, and temperature were collected in San Pablo Bay and China Camp Marsh as part of the San Francisco Bay Marsh Sediment Experiments. Several instruments were deployed in tidal creek, marsh, mudflat, and Bay locations, gathering data on

Date published: January 1, 2017

CoSMoS (Coastal Storm Modeling System) Southern California v3.0 Phase 2 wave-hazard projections: 1-year storm in Orange County

Model-derived significant wave height (in meters) for the given storm condition and sea-level rise (SLR) scenario.
The Coastal Storm Modeling System (CoSMoS) makes detailed predictions (meter-scale) over large geographic scales (100s of kilometers) of storm-induced coastal flooding and erosion for both current and future sea-level rise (SLR) scenarios. CoSMoS v3.0 for So

Date published: January 1, 2017

Reprocessed boomer 3D seismic-reflection data of field activity P-04-11-CC, in San Luis Obispo Bay, offshore of Pismo Beach, central California, 2011-12-06 to 2012-10-05

This dataset includes reprocessed boomer 3D seismic data collected by the Fugro Consultants Inc. in 2012, in San Luis Obispo Bay, offshore of Pismo Beach, central California.

Filter Total Items: 969
California Wildflower Superbloom, Spring 2017, Landsat 8
March 28, 2017

California Wildflower Superbloom, Spring 2017, Landsat 8

After 5 years of drought, California finally got relief during the winter of 2016–2017 with much needed precipitation. One result of this additional moisture was a springtime abundance of wildflowers in 2017. This Landsat 8 image shows a large area of wildflower "superbloom" just north of Los Padres National Forest in southern California.

 

Satellite image showing wildflower blooming in California.
March 28, 2017

The Wildflower Superbloom in California from Landsat’s Perspective

After 5 years of drought, California finally got relief during the winter of 2016–2017 with much needed precipitation. One result of this additional moisture was a springtime abundance of wildflowers.

There were many places to see this wildflower “superbloom” in southern California. This pair of images from Landsat

...
Men stand on a boat wearing safety gear and they are recovering damaged instrumentation from the water using cables and ropes.
March 21, 2017

Recovering instrument package from Monterey Canyon

On March 21, 2017, the sediment trap from this instrument package (deployed the previous October into Monterey Canyon) is gone and the mounting frame is mangled, having been exposed to several significant turbidity currents in one deployment. 

Photo of scientist climbing an island off the coast of Big Sur
March 15, 2017

WERC Big Sur Deployment

Scientists from the USGS Western Ecological Research Center deploy to Big Sur to study seabird populations.

USGS hydrologic technician stands in waist-high waters of a flooded Santa Maria River while taking streamflow measurements
March 1, 2017

Santa Maria River Flooding

A USGS hydrologic technician takes streamflow measurements during flooding of the Sisquoc River, a tributary of the Santa Maria River, near the town of Garey in Santa Barbara County. 

Photo of shoreline with very little sandy beach. Heavy equipment is  piling up large boulders (rip rap) along the eroded shore
February 28, 2017

Armoring the shore at Goleta Beach

Installing large boulders as rip rap to armor the shore against further erosion at Goleta Beach in Southern California. The tide is very low (negative).

photo of bare rocks exposed below cliffs at low tide along a shoreline.
February 28, 2017

Exposed bedrock at low tide

Exposed bedrock on the beach, below the University of California, Santa Barbara.

row of palm trees along a low cliff behind a narrow beach with very little sand
February 28, 2017

Beach loss and armoring at Goleta Beach

Beach loss and armoring at Goleta Beach, very low (negative) tide

long stretch of beach, with row of houses teetering on the edge of the cliff above beach. Bare rocks exposed & no sand on beach
February 28, 2017

Exposed bedrock at Isla Vista beach

Bedrock exposed at low tide along the beach at Isla Vista, California

house perched at the top of cliff edge above beach.
February 28, 2017

Exposed bedrock at Isla Vista

Exposed bedrock on the beach during very low (negative) tide at Isla Vista, California

Map showing depth of a very intricate bay and delta system color-coded to enhance central bay channels and tidal channels.
February 27, 2017

San Francisco Bay and Delta DEM

High-resolution (10-meter per pixel) digital elevation model (DEM) of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, using both bathymetry and topography data relative to current modern datum of North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD88). This DEM is the result of collaborative efforts of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the California Department of Water Resources (DWR).

two men standing in a boat tied up to a dock
January 31, 2017

Readying a sonar-equipped boat for mapping

USGS scientists readying a sonar-equipped boat to map the ocean bottom near Santa Cruz, Calif.

Filter Total Items: 927
Lassen Peak viewed from the south at the summit of Brokeoff Volcano...
May 22, 2012

On May 22, 1915 an explosive volcanic eruption occurred at Lassen Peak, California.

USGS
May 18, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. – Members of the news media are invited to attend the U.S. Geological Survey Open House in Menlo Park this weekend.  This event includes over 80 exhibits that highlight the work USGS scientists do. Join them in action as they share the excitement of their scientific work and discoveries with the general public. 

USGS
May 16, 2012

PORTLAND, Ore.­– The U.S. Geological Survey has developed models to help water managers identify strategies to use groundwater for meeting competing water demands in the semi-arid upper Klamath Basin. 

USGS
May 9, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. – Many Bay Area residents know what it’s like to experience an earthquake, but fewer of them know why earthquakes happen. The concepts behind earthquakes and living safely in earthquake country are as simple as a fishing line hooked to a stack of bricks, explains USGS geophysicist Ross Stein, whose family-friendly seismic demos and models are part of the...

USGS
May 7, 2012

CONTRA COSTA COUNTY, Calif. -- For the first time, scientists have measured the amounts of mercury flowing into the San Francisco estuary from tidal wetlands using a new technique that can measure concentrations of mercury in water every few minutes, which is essential for understanding mercury flows in a complex tidal estuarine environment. 

USGS
May 3, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. – Education and entertainment await visitors of all ages at the U.S. Geological Survey's Menlo Park Campus Open House on Saturday, May 19 and Sunday, May 20, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

USGS
April 16, 2012

Building an Earthquake Early Warning System for California

USGS
March 22, 2012

SAN DIEGO —Organic solvents were detected at high concentrations in 18 percent of the aquifer system used for public supply in the San Fernando and San Gabriel basins. However, groundwater is not directly used as drinking water; water purveyors may treat groundwater before delivering it to customers to ensure compliance with water quality standards.

USGS
March 20, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif. Decisions made by the global community about emissions will directly impact the future of the western United States.  On March 22nd, Tom Suchanek, U.S. Geological Survey climate change coordinator, will discuss how increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide might affect human land-use and environmental systems in California and the Bay Area. 

USGS
March 8, 2012

MENLO PARK, Calif.— The El Mayor-Cucapah earthquake in northern Baja California, Mexico on April 4, 2010 triggered surface movement on several Southern California faults. Detailed mapping of these small movements by the U.S. Geological Survey, California Geological Survey, and other institutions, revealed previously unknown faults in the greater Salton Sea area...

USGS
February 29, 2012

SACRAMENTO, Calif.— Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey have, for the first time, demonstrated how aquifer composition can affect how excessive levels of phosphorous (an essential nutrient contained in fertilizers) can be carried from fertilized agricultural fields via groundwater to streams and waterways. 

USGS
February 27, 2012

Waterfowl in California can spread low pathogenic avian influenza viruses during summertime when wetland temperatures are warm and waterfowl densities are low, according to a recent U.S. Geological Survey study.