The Russian River estuary opens with self breach

Sonoma County Gazette

The barrier beach at the mouth of the Russian River breached late in the afternoon on Thursday, January 7, 2021.

Sonoma Water did not artificially breach the barrier beach. The maximum water surface elevation measured at the USGS Hwy 1 stage gage was 10.23 feet. This would likely be approximately 10.4 feet at the Jenner gage.

It took a few hours, but water levels began to decline overnight and the water elevation is currently at 3.33 ft at the USGS Hwy 1 stage gage.

A few clarifications:

Barrier beach, beach berm – The sand ridge that separates the Russian River estuary from the Pacific Ocean. Sometimes shortened to just ‘beach’. The Russian River Biological Opinion uses ‘sandbar’ as a synonym.

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