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American River

The combined water flow of Arcade Creek, Dry Creek and Steelhead Creek flow in to the Sacramento River just north of the confluence with the American River.

Both Dry Creek Conservancy and Sacramento Area Creeks Council assist with collaborative efforts of watershed stakeholders to improve resource management and maximize collaboration among landowners, land users, recreational users, government agencies, and conservation groups in their focus areas.

The Lower American River Watershed is highly urbanized and originates from Folsom Lake, which was created by Folsom Dam,  a critical component of the Central Valley Project.  During a 24-hour period, the releases of water from Folsom Dam to meet changing demands for water and power can vary greatly which the downstream Nimbus Dam regulates by storing releases and re-regulating them to a steady flow downstream in the American River. Nimbus Dam forms Lake Natoma. The Lower American River has levees on its north and south banks for about 13 miles from the Sacramento River to Carmichael on the north end. Portions of the floodplain have been acquired by either the City or County of Sacramento and is managed cooperatively as the American River Parkway.  The American River Parkway Foundation and other non profit organizations provide education and volunteer opportunities to support healthy watersheds.

The following streams (often referred to as the American River Basin) are located between the American and Feather River systems: Coon Creek, Markham Ravine, Auburn Ravine, Pleasant Grove Creek, Curry Creek, Dry Creek, Cordova Creek (aka Clifton’s Drain), and Arcade Creek. Most of these creeks enter the floodplain drainage systems of the Natomas Cross Canal and Natomas East Main Drainage Canal in southern Sutter and northern Sacramento Counties.