Hot Off the Press: Redwood Creek Watershed Studies

New report captures 50 years of institutional knowledge about the NPS/USGS Redwood Creek watershed studies.

Find the report here.

The story of Redwood National Park (RNP) is one of landscape disturbance, recovery and resilience, uniquely documented by 50 years of observations and measurements. Old-growth coastal redwood forests (Sequoia sempervirens), encompassing the tallest trees in the world, once stretched along 450 miles of California coastline. By 2016, following widespread timber harvest, only 5% of the original primeval redwood forests remained, much of it protected within Redwood National Park. This report summarizes decades of studies of physical processes, both natural and human-influenced, affecting the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in Redwood National Park. The long-term monitoring has provided a rare opportunity to assess how a forested watershed responds to and recovers from large-scale perturbations.


  • Redwood Creek was buried with over 20 ft of sand and gravel about 2 miles above the Tall Trees Grove a few decades ago. Luckily, the channel is in recovering but you can still see the markers of the formerly buried channel.
  • Water temperature in Redwood Creek is still hot enough to periodically cause juvenile fish kills in the summer.
  • Redwood National Park collaborated with local landowners to decrease erosion in Redwood Creek.