Napa River: Wikis


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Napa River
The Napa River in Napa, as viewed from COPIA
Country United States
State California
Regions Napa County, Solano County
 - left Milliken Creek
City Napa
Source Mount Saint Helena
 - location Mayacmas Mountains [1]
 - elevation 3,745 ft (1,141 m) [2]
 - coordinates 38°39′52″N 122°37′14″W / 38.66444°N 122.62056°W / 38.66444; -122.62056 [1]
Mouth Carquinez Strait
 - location San Pablo Bay
 - elevation ft (0 m)
 - coordinates 38°4′12″N 122°14′38″W / 38.07°N 122.24389°W / 38.07; -122.24389 [1]
Length 55 mi (89 km) [3]
Basin 426 sq mi (1,103 km2) [4]
Discharge [5]
 - average 210 cu ft/s (5.9 m3/s)
 - max 26,200 cu ft/s (741.9 m3/s)
 - min cu ft/s (0 m3/s)

The Napa River, approximately 55 miles (89 km) long, is a river in the U.S. state of California. It drains a famous wine-growing region, called the Napa Valley, in the mountains northeast of San Francisco. Milliken Creek is a tributary of the Napa River.



Aerial view of the southern end of the Napa River in the Napa-Sonoma Marsh

The Napa River rises in northwestern Napa County south of Mt. St. Helena in the Mayacamas Mountains of the California Coast Ranges. It flows south for 4 miles (6 km), entering the head of the slender Napa Valley north of Calistoga. In the valley, it flows southeast past Calistoga, St Helena, Rutherford, Oakville and through Napa, its head of navigation. Downstream from Napa, it forms a tidal estuary, entering Mare Island Strait, a narrow channel on the north end of San Pablo Bay. Where the Napa River discharges into San Pablo Bay is a large wetland known as the Napa Sonoma Marsh. The Napa River watershed encompasses approximately 426 square miles (1,103 km²).

Natural history

Known for the vineyards in its valley, the river also provides a habitat for salmon and steelhead. Although Chinook salmon still spawn in the river, the Coho salmon population is extinct in the river and the steelhead population and splittail have been greatly reduced in recent years. The California Golden Beaver (Castor canadensis subauraticus) was historically extant.[6]

Napa Flood of 1986

In 1986, the worst of 23 floods recorded since 1865 on the Napa River occurred, and 5,000 people were evacuated, 250 homes were destroyed, and three people died.

Napa River-Napa Creek Flood Protection Project

After the devastating flood of 1986, the dormant Napa River Flood Project was revitalized. The Project underwent a lengthy redesign and was approved by the local voters in 1998. Construction began in 2000 and is expected to continue through 2011 or later.


The Napa River and the surrounding watershed provide many recreational opportunities. Whitewater kayaking and rafting can be done on the upper section of river from St. Helena to Napa. The lower section of the Napa River from Napa to San Pablo Bay has flatwater that is suitable for canoeing, sea kayaking and motorboating. The Napa River Trail has segments at Kennedy Park (N 38.26764 W 122.28373) & between Lincoln Ave (N 38.31055 W 122.27783) and Trancas St (N 38.32496 W 122.28384) in the city of Napa.


External links

See also



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