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Alviso King Tide Pictures, February 9, 2013

"King Tides" are extreme tides that occur in the winter when the sun and moon are lined up. There were 4 King Tides in the winter of 2012-2013. The last was to occur on Feb. 7-9. 10 foot tides were predicted for the mouth of Coyote Creek on 11:35 am on Feb. 9. To see the effect of these tides, I headed down to the south end of San Francisco Bay to Alviso. Here are some pictures taken that day.

This is the Guadalupe River upstream of the Gold Street Bridge at 10:55 am. The main river channel is on the right. The left side is normally dry.

The Guadalupe River Trail, upstream of the Gold Street Bridge, next to the Alviso Environmental Education Center. This side of the river channel is normally dry.

North bank of the Guadalupe River/Alviso Slough dowstream from the Gold Street Bridge, upstream of the train bridge. This side of the river channel is normally dry.

  South bank of the Guadalupe River/Alviso Slough dowstream from the Gold Street Bridge, upstream of the train bridge. This is the main slough channel.

This big pond is in Alviso, north of Elizabeth Street and east of the railroad tracks.

This is a view looking east along that pond, towards the Alviso Environmental Education Center.

This is Alviso Marina County Park. The former marina basin is now silted-in and filled with vegetation. It's open to tidal flow, but the dense reed growth make it hard to see the water level.

These are the new boat launching docks at 11:37 am.  Note how the docks are almost straight out. Nearly all the dock sections are in the water.

The Alviso Slough. This is just about the peak of the tide, though the water was stilling flowing up the slough.

View from the end of the docks. Note the dock sections are almost straight all the way to the launching ramp.

This is a view on 6/5/10, the day of the marina's dedication ceremony. The water level was much lower. Note that 3 sections of the dock are out of the water.

Across from the boat ramp, people are hiking on the Alviso Slough Trail.

This is the same view on 6/5/10. Note the height of of the pilings relative to the docks and the water level relative to the marsh vegetation.

These old boat docks are near the South Bay Yacht Club.

This is the same location on 10/16/10. Note how the old docks are out of the water.

The South Bay Yacht Club next to the levee.

Boats in the slough by the Yacht Club.

The boat docks are isolated from the shore by water. Normally, it is dry almost all the way to the boat docks.

This walkway leads over a bridge to the boat ramps.

This is the same dock on 10/16/10. Note the red walkway goes over dry land.

More boat docks along the Alviso Slough, separated from the land by water.

The wide Alviso Slough under the railroad bridge, 11:48 am. Normally, it is a narrow channel under the middle of the bridge.

This is the Alviso Marina basin at 12:02 pm. Viewing platforms and boardwalks cross the reed-filled basin. You can see the water in the marsh just below the trail.

On the Alviso Slough Trail at 12:03 pm. The pond on the right is a former salt pond, designated A12.

View looking back along the former salt pond.

View from the trail, looking towards the boat launching ramp. Water is inundating the marsh near the slough.

Looking across Pond A12. In the background is the Mission Peak range. A small island provides a nesting place for birds.

Telephoto view of Mission Peak.

Telephoto view of antenna-topped Mt. Allison.

There's a broad marshy area between the levee trail and the Alviso Slough. The water level in the marsh is about a yard below the top of the levee.

Marsh and bend in the slough.

Great egret by the pond.

This levee divides pond A12 (right) from A11 (left).

A kayaker paddles up the slough, while a bicyclist rides on the slough levee trail.

A jogger runs on the slough trail. The breached levee in the distance divides pond A11 here, from A10 behind it.

Mussel shells litter the shoreline of the pond.

In this telephoto view, far in the distance are the salt mounds at Cargill's Newark salt processing plant.

A motorboat heads up the Alviso Slough.

The motorboat's wake washes up along the levee. Marsh vegetation helps protect the levee from erosion. The water level is only a couple feet below the top of the old levee section. A newer section has been built several feet higher.

A great blue heron perches along the edge of the levee.

There are two large ravens at the edge of the levee.

Another breeched levee divides pond A10 here from A9 beyond.

A wide marsh lies between the slough and the levee.

Across the slough is a breached levee of a former salt pond, at 1:00 pm.

Near the northwest corner of Pond A9. Ahead is a tide gate.

This is the tide gate on the Alviso Slough. It is one of several gates that control tidal flow into the ponds.

This is the pond side of the tide gate controlling the water going into Pond A9.

This is at the corner of Pond A9. Beyond is the mouth of Coyote Creek.

This is the Alviso Slough on the left joining with the mouth of Coyote Creek on the right at 1:03 pm.

In the distance is a catwalk between the PG&E towers. Behind it is the Dumbarton Bridge. The hill in the distance is Mt. San Bruno.

In the distance is Mt Tamalpais. The top of the Dumbarton Crossing train trestle is on the right.

These hills are Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont.

Along the north edge of Pond A9, next to Coyote Creek.

Marsh and Coyote Creek.

Looking towards Fremon, with more marsh along Coyote Creek.

The levee trail between Coyote Creek on the left and Pond A9 on the right, at 1:12 pm. I turned around after this.

The pictures below were taken at the Alviso Environmental Education Center. I went there to hear a talk about the salt pond restoration project.

Boardwalk over New Chicago Marsh, leading to the Environmental Education Center.

The boardwalk over the New Chicago Marsh leads up to the levee south of Pond A16.

USFWS ranger Joseph Garcia leads a walk over the boardwalk, points out features of the marsh. The marsh has regulated tidal flow.

 This is Pond A16. It has been drained for restoration and will be re-flooded with controlled tidal flow. Islands have been created to provide nesting habitats for flocks of birds, like these seagulls.

This is the southeast corner of Pond A16. The old dock and newer viewing platform shows the former water level.

This is Mallard Slough, which is fed by the freshwater outfall from the nearby water treatment plant. On the other side is Pond A18.

This is a view at sunset looking across New Chicago Marsh at the Alviso Environmental Education Center.

  This is a telephoto view of the Environmental Education Center on the left and Mission Peak on the right.

Page created by Ron Horii, 2/11/13