Battle Creek (California)

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Battle Creek
Battle Creek
Country United States
State California
 - left South Fork Battle Creek, Spring Branch Battle Creek
 - right North Fork Battle Creek
Source Confluence of North Fork and South Fork
 - location Near Manton, California
 - elevation 868 ft (265 m)
 - coordinates 40°25′23″N 121°59′49″W / 40.42306°N 121.99694°W / 40.42306; -121.99694
Mouth Sacramento River
 - location Southeast of Anderson
 - elevation 338 ft (103 m)
 - coordinates 40°21′19″N 122°10′33″W / 40.35528°N 122.17583°W / 40.35528; -122.17583Coordinates: 40°21′19″N 122°10′33″W / 40.35528°N 122.17583°W / 40.35528; -122.17583
Length 47 mi (76 km) [1]
Volume 1 cu ft (0 m3)
Basin 365 sq mi (945 km2)
Discharge for USGS gage #11376550, 5.7 miles (9.2 km) from the mouth
 - average 501 cu ft/s (14 m3/s)
 - max 24,700 cu ft/s (699 m3/s)
 - min 102 cu ft/s (3 m3/s)

Battle Creek is a 16.6-mile-long (26.7 km)[2] creek located in Shasta and Tehama Counties, California. It is a major tributary to the Sacramento River.

The eastern side of the Battle Creek watershed falls within the northernmost part of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, as it transitions into the southern Cascade range. The undisturbed part of the watershed is richly diverse in both plant and animal species.[3] The tributaries of Battle Creek originate from dozens of underground springs.

The creek is part of a $67 million Chinook salmon restoration project, a PG&E Battle Creek Hydroelectric Project. Many adjacent properties hold conservation easements protecting them from development.

In addition to the Chinook salmon, the creek has steelhead, rainbow, and brown trout. Counterintuitively, first-year data from a post-wildfire soil erosion study funded by Sierra Pacific Industries, a large industrial timber company, show that control sites disturbed only by fire produced substantially more water runoff and soil erosion than did sites that received post-wildfire salvage logging.[4] However, given this document was written by an employee of the large timber company which has extensively salvage logged the watershed, the results are questionable. Furthermore, two hydrologists' reviews of the document found substantial flaws in it.[5][6]

S fork of Battle Creek June, 2016, downstream of industrial timberland after 1" of rain

The industrial timberland in the Battle Creek watershed is upstream of the restoration project. The clearcutting and post-fire salvage logging which has been occurring since 1998 is the subject of the documentary film "Clearcut Nation", produced by local residents. A Citizen’s Water Monitoring Project has been collecting water quality data both upstream and downstream of the industrial timberland since 2009. This data was analyzed by a statistical hydrologist in 2014.[7]

Battle Creek


  1. ^ Including the South Fork
  2. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map Archived 2012-04-05 at WebCite, accessed March 10, 2011
  3. ^ Cal Photos
  4. ^ James, Cajun "Post Wildfire Salvage Logging, Soil Erosion, and Sediment Delivery, Ponderosa Fire, Battle Creek Watershed, Northern California"
  5. ^ Myers, Tom "Review of Study: Inspection of Sierra Pacific Industries’ Ponderosa Post-Fire Sediment Study, Shasta County, California"
  6. ^ Lewis, Jack Topographic Characterization of Swales in Sierra Pacific Industries’ Ponderosa Post-Fire Sediment Study, Shasta County, California [1]
  7. ^ Lewis, Jack "An Analysis of Turbidity in Relation to Timber Harvesting in the Battle Creek Watershed, northern California September 2014"

External links[edit]