Restoring Van Norden Meadow

Eloise taking groundwater well measurements and stream flow in Van Norden and its surrounding tributaries.

This summer, Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership (SNAP) member Eloise Bellingham, Monitoring Coordinator at the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL), has been conducting groundwater well monitoring and stream flow measurements across Van Norden Meadow. This is part of an ongoing data collection project to better understand the overall water table fluctuations in the meadow.

Eloise showing a group of high school students how to take groundwater measurements as a part of SYRCL’s Youth Outdoor Leadership Opportunity (YOLO) Program.

This summer, Van Norden Meadow has been undergoing one of the Sierra’s most significant meadow restoration projects. Sitting at the headwaters of the South Yuba River, this 485-acre meadow will help SYRCL and partnering organizations understand how restoration projects can affect hydrology, ecology, and the biology of meadow ecosystems. Monitoring groundwater and stream flow pre and post-restoration will be critical in determining how restoration projects like this can affect water flow and retention in the meadow.

Eloise in Van Norden showing the tools they use for groundwater measurements. 

Not only are meadows important habitats for natural water retention, but they are also some of the most beautiful parts of the Sierra. By participating in these types of meadow restoration projects, we are preserving and protecting the state’s water resources, the habitat of native species, and outdoor spaces for people to recreate and enjoy safely!

Van Norden Meadow

Learn more about the efforts of Eloise and the SYRCL team on their website.

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