twitter icon facebook icon youtube icon instagram icon

Stories from the valley

Puddles on the landscape mean more than you might think

Contributed by Tim Johnson

It was a wonderful sight as I pulled into the ranch the other day – a big puddle right in front of the vineyard sign! It meant that the top layers of the soil were filling up enough for the water to sit on the top of the ground.

puddle in front of vineyard sign

In the vineyard, we know that when we start to see puddles that the small seasonal creeks will be flowing. A quick walk into the native oak woodlands downhill from the old vineyard proved it – water was tumbling down the granite rocks and forming the smallest of streams that eventually run into the North Fork of the Cosumnes.

The surface of the ground was even wet enough to see water welling up out of the gopher holes!

rain water running through field

For us this is a sure sign that the water is soaking in and that now much of the rain will translate into run off filling the reservoirs, as well as filling up the aquifers.

This is great news that is often missed in the headlines. At the vineyard however it is clear – with every storm the grip of the drought is releasing its hold.