Watersheds of the Santa Cruz Mountains

Fred Mc Pherson  9-2018

With input from Nicole Martin

This list of Watersheds includes the watersheds of the major rivers, streams, creeks that run to the ocean or bay from the Santa Cruz Mountains in alphabetical order. Also included are major aquifer basins that do not drain into the ocean or bay.


Adobe Creek

Ano Nuevo Creek

Aptos Creek

Arana Gulch

Arana Gulch-Rodeo

Arroyo de los Frijoles Creek

Barron Creek

Baldwin Wilder

Butano Creek

Calabazas Creek

Cascade Creek

Davenport Creek

Denniston Creek

Green Oaks Creek

Frenchmans Creek

Gazos Creek

Guadalupe River (Includes: Alviso Slough, Campbell Creek?, Los Gatos Creek,Trout Creek, Hendly's Creek, Ross Creek, Pheasant Creek, Rincon creek, Herbert Creek, Golf Creek, Lexington Reservoir, Calero Resovoir, Almaden Reservoir,  Vasona Reservoir, Alamitos Creek)

Laguna Creek

Liddell Creek

Lobitas Creek

Lobos Creek

Majors Creek

Martini Creek

Matadero Creek

Medio Creek

Pajaro River (Includes Llagas Creek, Uvas Creek, Little Arthur Creek, Carmenetos Creek, Corralitos Creek)

Permanente Creek

Pescadero Creek

Pilarcitos Creek

Pomponio Creek

Purisima Creek Physical Components

San Andreas

San Francisquito Creek

San Gregorio Creek

San Lorenzo River (Includes Eagle Creek, Zayante Creek, Fall Creek, Newell Creek, Love Creek, Bear Creek, Boulder Creek, Two Bar Creek, Kings Creek)

San Pedro Creek

San Vicente Creek

Saratoga Creek (includes: Guadalupe Slough, San Thomas Aquino Creek, Smith Creek, Wildcat creek, Booker Creek, Calabazas Creek, Rodeo creek, Sunnyvale East channel, Sunnyvale West channel)

Scotts Creek (Little Creek, Big Creek, Mill Creek)

Soquel Creek

Swanton Bluffs

Stevens Creek

Tunitas Creek

Watsonville Sloughs

Waddell Creek

West Basin Aquifer (Lake Merced Area)

Whitehouse Creek

In the future the following tributary characteristics matrix will be added under each crrek on the list as information becomes available. The following is an example:


Physical Components

1.  Approximate size of the watershed:

2.  Approximate length of the tributary:

3.  Elevation change in the watershed (watershed gradient map):

4.  Geographical orientation:

5.  Geological formations/substrate materials:

6.  Water flow rates and characteristics (hydrology):

7.  Water quality information:


Living Components

8.  Adjoining Riparian communities:

9.  Characteristic plants and animals in the water (nekton and plankton):

10.  Characteristic plants and animals on the water (neuston):

11.  Characteristic plants and animals on the bottom (benthos):

12.  Endangered, threatened, and rare species:

13.  Extinct plants and animals:

14.  Evolutionary history and connection with other tributaries:

Human Uses and Impacts

15.  Land-use history:

16.  % of river/stream length in relatively "undisturbed" (un-channeled and un-built upon)             condition:

17.  200 years ago (What did it probably look like?):

18.  Major resource management issues (biggest threats):

19.  Nature centers (places where it can still be seen and studied):

20.  References:

21.  Resources (people, helpful organizations, etc.):