The Central Valley is a narrow, beltshaped valley, that is geographically bound by the Coasts in the west, the Sierra Nevada Range in the east, the Rockies in the north and the Desert in the south. The valley is (finely) demarcated into the Sacramento Valley and San Joaquin Valley going from north to south.
The Central Valley is a large basin comprising of several thousand feet thick alluvial sediments, deposited by river erosion from the North & East mountain ranges, over millions of years. Underneath thee layers are California’s richest oil reserves.
California's Central Valley is a flat valley that rules the middle of the U.S. state of California. It is 40 to 60 miles broad and area approx 450 miles from north to southeast, towards from and which is parallel to the Pacific Ocean. The valley covers about 22,500 sq miles occupying 13.7% land of California and which is home to large productive agricultural area with 230 crops are grown there.
The Central Valley consists of two major parts: the Sacramento Valley in north and the drier San Joaquin Valley in the south, with the Tulare Basin at the southernmost end. The Sacramento and San Joaquin river systems meet to form a delta, a large area of combined canals, stream beds, sloughs, marshes and peat islands, eventually flowing to the Pacific by means of San Francisco Bay. Basically Tulare Basin will never flow into ocean even though it is linked with canals to San Joaquin which naturally drain over there.
The valley is a rainshadow region, that receives limited rainfall during the winter. The precipitation in the north is average, whereas it is scanty down south. The Death Valley down south is one of the most arid regions of the western hemisphere, and also once recorded a daytemperature of 57 degrees celsius.
The major natural reserves of this region are Crude Oil, as mentioned earlier. But the quality of crude and the costs of extraction are major deterrents to largescale rigging on a regular basis.
Comprising of grasses and herbs/wildflower plants on one end, to the imposing Giant Sequoia trees at the other end of the scale, the flora is varied across the valley. The scenic wildflower vegetation has stunning carpets of lupines, poppies and sunflowers. The Giant Sequoia trees can be thousands of years old, have girths running into hundreds of feet, and can grow up to thousands of feet tall!
Actual fauna, as expected, varies depending on the ecological pocket of the region. Marshes are home to small mammals such as the Muskrat and the Beaver, and a very rich variety of insect population. Grasslands and Woodlands are inhabited by a wide variety of mammals, lizards and snakes.
Birds are seasonal migrators, and are always in search of waterhole pockets. The freshwater marshes see them being the dominant dwellers and nesters. Several stunning species of aves, including swans, geese, ducks and shorebirds in large numbers. The Riparian Woodlands generally see large numbers of Woodland Warblers.
The Central Valley is popularly marketed as “The Land of a Billion Vegetables”, and is a good example of labourextensive, mechanized farming; with subsidized irrigation facilities to farmers. Agriculture seems to be on the decline, though. Recent droughts and human induced climate change are forcing farmers to go to greener pastures.
Based on most recent census data, this region has a human population of close to 2 million, with majority being White and Hispanic. There is also a significant portion of Black and Asian origin residents. The demography sees around 30% of the population to be under the age of 18, and roughly 20% under the poverty line
|Location||California, United States|
|Long-axis Length||450 mi (720 km)|
|Width||40 to 60 miles (64 to 97 km)|
|Area||22,500 square miles (58,000 km2)|
|Depth||2,000 to 6,000 feet (610 to 1,830 m)|
|Age||2-3 million years|
|Bounded by||Sierra Nevada (east), Cascade Range, Klamath Mountains (north), Coast Range, San Francisco Bay (west), Tehachapi Mountains (south)|
|Population Centers||Redding, Chico, Yuba City, Sacramento, Stockton, Porterville, Modesto, Turlock, Merced, Fresno, Visalia, Bakersfield, Clovis|
|Traversed by||Interstate 5, Interstate 80, State Route 99|
|Watercourses||Sacramento River, San Joaquin River, Kings River|
|Zip Codes||96019, 96079|
The Central Valley is surrounded by Cascade, Sierra Nevada, Tehachapi mountain ranges on the East and Coast Ranges, San Francisco Bay on the west.
Sub regions and their counties usually connected with the valley comprise:
At present 65 million people live in Central Valley and has 12 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) and 1 Micropolitan Statistical Area(μSA).
The following metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas listed below:
The Central Valley has a Mediterranean climate and in summer daytime temperatures approach 100 °F (38 °C) to 115 °F (46 °C).
Hmong is the most commonly spoken language in Central Valley.
|Date & Time||Event Name|
|January 1 (8:00 AM)||The Rose Bowl Parade|
|April 25||Butter and Egg Days Parade and Festival|
|April 26||Petaluma's Annual Spring Antique Faire|
|June 20-21||Hollister Airshow, Hollister|
|July 10, 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19||Mary Poppins, Oakland|
|August 22-23||Palo Alto Festival of the Arts, Palo Alto|
|August 25||Taste of Oakdale, Oakdale|
|September 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13||Aida, Oakland|
|September 14||Oakdale Chamber Golf Classic, Oakdale|
|December 31||Singles New Year's ROCKIN' Eve, Del Mar|
|Amboy Crater||May 1973||San Bernardino|
|Anza-Borrego Desert||1974||Imperial, Riverside, San Diego|
|Año Nuevo State Reserve||1980||San Mateo|
|American River and Phoenix Park Vernal Pools||1976||Sacramento|
|Black Chasm Cave||1976||Amador|
|Cinder Cone Natural Area||1973||San Bernardino|
|Cosumnes River Preserve||1976||Sacramento|
|Deep Springs Marsh||1975||Inyo|
|Dixon Vernal Pools||1987||Solano|
|Emerald Bay||1968||El Dorado|
|Fish Slough||1975||Inyo, Mono|
|Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes||1974||San Luis Obispo|
|Imperial Sand Hills||1966||Imperial|
|Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks||2006||Orange|
|Lake Shasta Caverns||May 2012||Shasta|
|Miramar Mounds||1972||San Diego|
|Mitchell Caverns||1975||San Bernardino|
|Mt. Diablo State Park||1982||Contra Costa|
|Pixley Vernal Pools||1987||Tulare|
|Pygmy Forest at Van Damme State Park||1969||Mendocino|
|Rainbow Basin||1966||San Bernardino|
|La Brea Tar Pits (Rancho La Brea)||1964||Los Angeles|
|San Andreas Fault||1965||San Benito|
|San Felipe Creek||1974||Imperial San Diego|
|Sand Ridge Wildflower Preserve||1984||Kern|
|Tijuana River Estuary||1973||San Diego|
|Torrey Pines State Reserve||1977||San Diego|
|Trona Pinnacles||1967||San Bernardino|
|Turtle Mountain||1973||San Bernardino|
Central Valley of California Map
Central Valley of California Road Transportation
Central Valley of California Map on USA
Central Valley of California Water Resources