Monday, June 01, 2009

Rattlesnake Canyon

This week's Car Talk Puzzler is about Rattlesnake Canyon in Santa Barbara a place that I've hiked in many times, while I was thrilled to hear about it, I find the timing ironic as parts of the area just burned in the Jesusita Fire in early May. (Yes, like 3 weeks ago.)

The puzzler is why is the water level higher in August than in the beginning of summer even though the rainy season doesn't start till Nov or so. I could swear there's a hot spring on the trail and was sure that it had something to do with that (the summer heat maybe bringing the water out more), but I can't find a reference to a hot spring, just a description of the pool that people would play in created by a very old filled in dam (this part i remember well). There are also a lot of very cool small falls on the trail. The water is clearly from a spring, so it's possible that the fact it's from a spring has something to do with it. Though I can't figure it out as the spring on Shasta stops running late in summer so it's probably not from a normal spring which brings me back to there must be a hot spring in there somewhere. My memory of the area just isn't clear enough - guess I spent too much time playing around the water (it was a great obstacle course) and didn't soak in the water much. There are worse fates.

Anyway I'm sad about the area burning. I know it's intended to burn, but that doesn't make it any easier.


Elf said...

People draining or refilling their swimming pools and hot tubs in preparation for winter months?

Elf said...

Although I'll admit that would have to be a lot of people upstream, and it's not clear that's the case in rattlesnake canyon. i'm not familiar with it.

Ellen said...

It's a nearly completely undeveloped area

John McNelly said...

My guess is during the rainy season, a portion of the rain soaks into the ground in the mountains. Eventually the water hits bedrock, and then flows along the bedrock, which slants toward the stream. By the time autumn arrives, the water has made it downhill to the stream. Just a guess.

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