Image
The Los Gatos Creek runs 24 miles (39 km) from the Santa Cruz Mountains northward through the Santa Clara Valley until its confluence with the Guadalupe River in downtown San Jose. Our creek has experienced many changes including the construction of Lexington Reservoir to support local water needs and creek habitat cemented in to improve passage of flood waters. In spite of this, nature still finds a way to coexist in this flow-restricted and controlled ecosystem.
 
Image
Our creek has seen the return of Chinook salmon and Steelhead trout migrations. These migrations began long before Europeans settled in this valley. Even as late as the mid-nineties, Los Gatos Creek had hundreds of Chinook salmon spawning in our creek. These numbers have declined dramatically. Where once there were thousands of fish in these water ways, we see only dozens. One of our goals is to restore these fisheries to sustainable populations.
Click on image to start video.
Click on image to start video.

Vasona County Park is a rookery for the Great Blue Heron.  Our wildlife camera along Los Gatos Creek captured the images in the video to your right.
Click on image to start video.
Click on image to start video.
Over the past several decades, there has been a decline in the health of this creek. Standards have slipped, adjacent neighborhoods have watched and accepted this decline and much of the problem has been outside the public's view.
 
Many have commented about how and why Los Gatos Creek is so impacted by trash. Sadly, what you will see is relatively tame version compared to  conditions on areas of the Coyote Creek with the Guadalupe River that are still showing the lingering effects of chronic encampment activity. Our creeks and homeless deserve better.
 
We as a community must take a leadership role in the stewardship of our creek. Nature has an amazing ability to recover and we are seeing the early signs of this. Recently, we have seen the return of beaver after almost being trapped to extinction 160 years ago.
Image
You can follow all of our activities on the Los Gatos Creek on our Friends of Los Gatos  Creek Facebook page.
 
 
Image
We have been fortunate to have organizations join our efforts to make a difference.
 
The Willow Glen Neighborhood Association joined us for the Old Willow Glen Trestle clearing of encampments with 20+ Campers. After seven major cleanups and the City/Water District cleanups, we have reclaimed this area. Many of the local homeowners were doubtful whether our group would succeed and had simply resolved themselves that this was unfixable.
Image

Without the support from the local agencies, corporate sponsors, community service groups and clubs, our progress would not have reached the level it has. One group in particular, San Jose Flycasters, has supported our group financially, offered volunteers willing to enter the creek and remove the trash with an ongoing commitment to this project.

All these sponsors contributions are making a difference!

Join us for our next cleanup and you’ll see what an impact just two hours of work will make on this lovely creek!