Take me to the river

South Fork American River near Coloma — can you spot the pumpkin?

As much as I love walking along the shores of Lake Natoma, it does make me rather sad to think of how the American River once flowed freely there, before the construction of Folsom Dam and Nimbus Dam. Like so many of our Northern California rivers and creeks, it was a prime spawning area for wild salmon; now we have a fish hatchery at Nimbus instead. And as lovely — and even sometimes as lively — as the lake can be, there’s nothing like a restless river, hurrying on its way to meet the ocean. There is something so very soothing about watching and listening to the river as it rolls and tumbles over rocks and boulders. It’s also fun to photograph — although a bit of a challenge in the bright midday sun!


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