North Fork Ditch

I’m sure that one reason I find the North Fork Ditch remnants at Folsom Lake so fascinating is that their history goes all the way back to the mid 1850s. (Ditches were also constructed around the same period along both sides of the South Fork, but I’ve never seen the remains of these.) I’ve shot photos of bits and pieces of the ditch before — for example, at Avery’s Pond — but the shoreline between Horseshoe Bar and Rattlesnake Bar contains more sections of the NFD’s structure than any other place I’ve explored thus far.

Concrete remnant at Avery’s Pond, Rattlesnake Bar, April 2016

In the early 1910s it was determined that the North Fork Ditch was losing a substantial amount of water to leakage through the earth-lined canal. A program was put in place to line the entire ditch with concrete. It is the concrete lining that can be seen today when the lake is low — Kevin Knauss in Hidden History Beneath Folsom Lake

Long sections of the NFD now exist as a dirt trail

El Dorado Hills lies in the distance

1 Comment »

  1. Thank you very much for posting this! I have lots of pictures similar to these from different parts of Folsom Lake so I will be sharing them too. Over the last year I have been exploring the ditches on both sides of the South Fork of the American River. I’m really surprised how many miles these ditches stetch!


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