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Santa Clarita Valley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Santa Clarita Valley
Santa Clarita Valley.jpg
LA County Incorporated Areas Santa Clartia Valley.png
Santa Clarita in Los Angeles County
Floor elevation1,000–1,800 feet (300–550 m)
Naming
Native nameSpanish: Valle de Santa Clarita
Geography
LocationCalifornia, United States
Population centersSanta Clarita
Traversed byInterstate 5, State Route 14
RiversSanta Clara River

The Santa Clarita Valley (SCV) is part of the upper watershed of the Santa Clara River in Southern California. The valley was part of the 48,612-acre (19,673 ha) Rancho San Francisco Mexican land grant. Located in Los Angeles County, its main population center is the city of Santa Clarita which includes the communities of Canyon Country, Newhall, Saugus, and Valencia. Adjacent unincorporated communities include Castaic, Stevenson Ranch, Val Verde, and  the unincorporated parts of Valencia.

Etymology

The Santa Clara River was named by Spanish explorers for Claire of Assisi. The valley later became known as "little Santa Clara" in deference to the Northern California mission and city of Santa Clara, California. In time, "little Santa Clara" became "Santa Clarita."[1]

Geography

The Santa Clarita Valley is bordered by the Lake Piru area, including the community of Val Verde, Los Padres National Forest, and Castaic Lake to the northwest, Sierra Pelona Mountains and Angeles National Forest to the north and northeast, San Gabriel Mountains to the east and southeast, and Santa Susana Mountains to the south and southwest, and Ventura County and the Santa Clara River Valley to the west. To the west-northwest lies the Topatopa Mountains.

Santa Clarita Valley is connected to a wide array of other nearby valleys: the San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles Basin via Newhall Pass to the south; Antelope Valley via CA 14 through Soledad Pass to the northeast; the San Joaquin Valley via I-5 through Tejon Pass to the northwest, and Leona Valley via San Francisquito and Bouquet canyons.

Downstream lies the Santa Clara River Valley, which was given the moniker Heritage Valley by the tourism bureau representing Piru, Fillmore, and Santa Paula. Upstream is Soledad Canyon which contains the communities of Vincent, Acton, Ravenna, and Agua Dulce.

Overlooking Santa Clarita from Ed Davis Park at Towsley Canyon.
Overlooking Santa Clarita from Ed Davis Park at Towsley Canyon.

Geology

The Santa Clarita Valley is underlain by Quaternary alluvial deposits and coarse-grained Pleistocene age conglomerates dominated by sandstone of marine and non-marine origin. The far eastern end of the valley features predominantly coarse-grained Tertiary age formations of sedimentary origin. The southern end of Bouquet Canyon features a large areas of artificial fill stretching from Newhall Ranch Road up to Copper Hill Drive.[2][3]

The valley is bisected by the San Gabriel Fault, which runs through the center of the valley along a NW-SE axis. The much smaller Holser Fault runs east-to-west between the south-eastern Topatopa Mountains and the present day community of Valencia. Neither fault line has been active since the early Holocene era.[4]

Climate

The valley features a Mediterranean climate (Köppen Csa) with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. Temperatures often exceed 100 °F (38 °C) on hot summer afternoons but rarely dip below 25 °F (−4 °C) on cold winter nights.

Late spring and early summer mornings are often overcast due to the formation of a marine layer off the coast that moves inland overnight. These clouds typically retreat out of the valley by midday.

The valley is part of a "wind-tunnel-like-corridor" that connects the high desert with the Oxnard Plain on the coast. This funnels the Santa Ana winds which spreads wildfires and has been called one of the "most dangerous wind and fire corridors in Southern California." This served to spread the Maria Fire, one of the 2019 California wildfires.[5]

Climate data for Santa Clarita, California (Dry Canyon Reservoir, 1961-1990 averages, 1921-1990 average monthly extremes[a])
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 91
(33)
89
(32)
91
(33)
103
(39)
110
(43)
109
(43)
117
(47)
112
(44)
115
(46)
106
(41)
99
(37)
95
(35)
117
(47)
Mean maximum °F (°C) 77.2
(25.1)
78.9
(26.1)
82.5
(28.1)
88.2
(31.2)
95.4
(35.2)
101.2
(38.4)
104.9
(40.5)
105.3
(40.7)
103.3
(39.6)
95.6
(35.3)
86.0
(30.0)
79.2
(26.2)
107.7
(42.1)
Average high °F (°C) 63.7
(17.6)
65.7
(18.7)
68.3
(20.2)
72.1
(22.3)
78.7
(25.9)
87.2
(30.7)
94.2
(34.6)
94.8
(34.9)
89.4
(31.9)
81.6
(27.6)
69.0
(20.6)
64.3
(17.9)
77.6
(25.3)
Average low °F (°C) 35.4
(1.9)
36.5
(2.5)
37.8
(3.2)
40.6
(4.8)
45.4
(7.4)
50.0
(10.0)
54.5
(12.5)
55.2
(12.9)
51.4
(10.8)
45.6
(7.6)
38.5
(3.6)
35.4
(1.9)
44.0
(6.7)
Mean minimum °F (°C) 26.4
(−3.1)
28.9
(−1.7)
30.7
(−0.7)
34.0
(1.1)
38.3
(3.5)
43.1
(6.2)
47.9
(8.8)
48.7
(9.3)
44.3
(6.8)
37.3
(2.9)
32.0
(0.0)
27.0
(−2.8)
24.8
(−4.0)
Record low °F (°C) 16
(−9)
20
(−7)
19
(−7)
28
(−2)
28
(−2)
33
(1)
39
(4)
40
(4)
33
(1)
22
(−6)
24
(−4)
15
(−9)
15
(−9)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 2.68
(68)
3.14
(80)
2.46
(62)
1.04
(26)
0.26
(6.6)
0.03
(0.76)
0.03
(0.76)
0.18
(4.6)
0.34
(8.6)
0.42
(11)
1.83
(46)
1.98
(50)
14.40
(366)
Source 1: [6]
Source 2: [7]

Ecology

Coastal sage and chaparral typical of the southwestern and central portions of the valley.
Montane chaparral typical of the northern and eastern foothills.

Santa Clarita lies on the boundary between the WWF-designated California coastal sage and chaparral ecoregion to the southwest, and California montane chaparral and woodlands ecoregion to the northeast.

Resident mammal species of note include bobcat, coyote, red-tailed hawk, and desert cottontail.[8]

Entertainment

The Santa Clarita Valley is about 20 miles (32 km) from the Burbank Bob Hope Airport, and about 35 miles (56 km) from Los Angeles International Airport.[9] It is home to the 262-acre (106 ha) theme park Six Flags Magic Mountain which includes the gated waterpark Six Flags Hurricane Harbor. It offers a variety of family-oriented activity centers such as the Mountasia Family Fun Center, Copper Horse Riding Ranch, and the Cube (formerly Ice Station Valencia), restaurants and shopping centers, golf courses, cinemas and theaters, luxurious day spas, outdoor recreation areas like Castaic Lake, Placerita Canyon, and Santa Clarita Woodlands Park, as well as acres of parkland, animal sanctuaries like the Gentle Barn and Gibbon Conservation Center, over 70 miles of paseos and trails for hiking and biking, and more. The valley is also home to a number of historical sites, such as the oil drilling town Mentryville, Walk of Western Stars, and William S. Hart Ranch and Museum. The Santa Clarita Valley has a rich Western heritage, and since 1994, it has hosted an annual Cowboy Festival, which attracts more than 10,000 visitors each year.[10]

Education

Elementary school students in Santa Clarita are served by the Castaic, Newhall, Saugus, and Sulphur Springs school districts. Junior high and high schools are part of the William S. Hart Union High School District, except for Castaic Middle School which is in the Castaic Union School District.

The unincorporated mountain communities of Acton and Agua Dulce are served by the Acton-Agua Dulce Unified School District, which serves students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

There are three institutions of higher education in the valley: College of the Canyons, California Institute of the Arts, and The Master's University.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ The record temperatures are sourced from the Weather Channel and the period of record is unknown.

References

  1. ^ Newhall., Ruth Waldo (February–March 1997). "How Santa Clarita Got Its Name". Old Town Newhall Gazette. Retrieved 22 March 2018 – via www.scvhistory.com.
  2. ^ "Quaternary Surficial Deposits (Aluvial Fan Task Force)". maps.conservation.ca.gov. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  3. ^ "Geologic Map of California". maps.conservation.ca.gov. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  4. ^ "Fault Activity Map of California". maps.conservation.ca.gov. Retrieved 2021-05-11.
  5. ^ Fry, Hannah; Puente, Mark; Lin II, Rong-Gong; Wigglesworth, Alex (2019-11-01). "Maria fire charges toward Santa Paula neighborhoods, forcing additional evacuations". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2019-11-01.
  6. ^ "DRY CANYON RSVR, CALIFORNIA". Western Regional Climate Center. Retrieved 2021-03-07.
  7. ^ "Santa Clarita, CA Monthly Weather Forecast". The Weather Channel. Retrieved 2021-03-12.
  8. ^ "The Atlas of Global Conservation". maps.tnc.org. Retrieved 2021-04-09.
  9. ^ "Transportation". Visit Santa Clarita. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  10. ^ "About – Cowboy Festival". cowboyfestival.org. Retrieved 2016-02-14.

External links

This page was last edited on 26 May 2021, at 22:01
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