Technical ReportPDF Available

Searching for La Rinconada: Geoarchaeological Assessment, San Diego, California

Authors:
  • Catena Affiliates, Tucson, USA

Abstract and Figures

In September 2016, a geoarchaeological investigation was conducted by LSA to determine if buried cultural deposits of the prehistoric/ethnohistoric village site of La Rinconada de Jamo (La Rinconada), CA-SDI-5017, or any other archaeological sites are present within the proposed project area for Sewer Group 786 and Sewer and Water Group 955. The project is located in the community of Pacific Beach in the City of San Diego. Core drilling was completed on September 6 through 8, 2016. Ten cores ranging between 19 feet and 24 feet in length were collected, with stratigraphic analysis conducted from September 8 through 15, 2016. All ten cores were located outside of midden deposits identified by previous archaeological investigations. Soil descriptions for each core included the following properties: master horizon/stratigraphic depths, Munsell color (moist only because almost all samples were moist), textural estimates by the ribbon method, gravel content, redoximorphic features, and inclusions of shell, artifacts, and other noteworthy observations. No artifacts or midden deposits were found in the LSA core samples. Burned soil and rock was discovered in LSA-5 next to Grand Avenue at a shallow depth of 19–26 centimeters (cm) below surface. Charcoal stains were noted below the oxidized color in the core sample and several pieces of fire-affected rock (FAR) were found in the oxidized matrix. This observation is near the interface with the road base and may not be cultural in context. Examination of the deposit at this location is recommended once the road pavement and road base are removed during construction. Due to the potential presence of subsurface deposits associated with CA-SDI-5017 within the project area, cultural resource monitoring of all native sediment deposits associated with the excavation of sewer and water lines is recommended. All field notes, photographs, and other project-related materials can be accessed at the LSA Carlsbad office.
Content may be subject to copyright.
SEARCHING FOR LA RINCONADA:
FINAL GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER & WATER GROUP 955
CITY OF SAN DIEGO
SAN DIEGO COUNTY, CALIFORNIA
Prepared for:
City of San Diego
Development Services Department
1010 Second Avenue
San Diego, California 92101-4905
Prepared by:
Jeffrey A. Homburg, Ph.D., RPA
Catena Affiliated
And
Roderic McLean, M.A., RPA
LSA
703 Palomar Airport Road, Suite 260
Carlsbad, California 92011
LSA Project No. RKE1601
National Archeological Database (NADB) Information
Type of Investigation: Geotechnical Core Testing
USGS Quadrangle: La Jolla, California 7.5-minute
Sites Recorded: None
Updated Sites: None
Key Words: Mission Bay, geoarchaeological testing, La Jolla 7.5-minute quadrangle, CA-SDI-5017
April 2017
LSA ASSOCIATES, INC. FINAL GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
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ABSTRACT
In September 2016, a geoarchaeological investigation was conducted by LSA to determine if buried
cultural deposits of the prehistoric/ethnohistoric village site of La Rinconada de Jamo (La
Rinconada), CA-SDI-5017, or any other archaeological sites are present within the proposed project
area for Sewer Group 786 and Sewer and Water Group 955. The project is located in the community
of Pacific Beach in the City of San Diego. Core drilling was completed on September 6 through 8,
2016. Ten cores ranging between 19 feet and 24 feet in length were collected, with stratigraphic
analysis conducted from September 8 through 15, 2016. All ten cores were located outside of midden
deposits identified by previous archaeological investigations. Soil descriptions for each core included
the following properties: master horizon/stratigraphic depths, Munsell color (moist only because
almost all samples were moist), textural estimates by the ribbon method, gravel content,
redoximorphic features, and inclusions of shell, artifacts, and other noteworthy observations. No
artifacts or midden deposits were found in the LSA core samples. Burned soil and rock was
discovered in LSA-5 next to Grand Avenue at a shallow depth of 19–26 centimeters (cm) below
surface. Charcoal stains were noted below the oxidized color in the core sample and several pieces of
fire-affected rock (FAR) were found in the oxidized matrix. This observation is near the interface
with the road base and may not be cultural in context. Examination of the deposit at this location is
recommended once the road pavement and road base are removed during construction. Due to the
potential presence of subsurface deposits associated with CA-SDI-5017 within the project area,
cultural resource monitoring of all native sediment deposits associated with the excavation of sewer
and water lines is recommended. All field notes, photographs, and other project-related materials can
be accessed at the LSA Carlsbad office.
LSA ASSOCIATES, INC. FINAL GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
ABSTRACT ............................................................................................................................................ i
TABLE OF CONTENTS ....................................................................................................................... ii
Tables ............................................................................................................................................... ii
Figures ............................................................................................................................................. ii
Appendices ...................................................................................................................................... iii
INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................................................. 1
PROJECT DESCRIPTION .................................................................................................................... 1
PERSONNEL ......................................................................................................................................... 1
ARCHAEOLOGICAL SETTING .......................................................................................................... 4
Site CA-SDI-5017 .................................................................................................................................. 4
Previous Archaeology ...................................................................................................................... 4
GEOLOGIC CONTEXT ...................................................................................................................... 16
Soils Map Data ..................................................................................................................................... 18
PALEOENVIRONMENTAL AND ARCHAEOLOGICAL CONTEXT OF COASTAL SAN
DIEGO.................................................................................................................................................. 23
History of Dredging in Mission Bay .................................................................................................... 29
Background on Buried Site Modeling .................................................................................................. 31
METHODS ........................................................................................................................................... 34
REPORT OF FINDINGS ..................................................................................................................... 37
Core Stratigraphy ........................................................................................................................... 38
Buried Site Model .......................................................................................................................... 44
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ............................................................................... 46
REFERENCES ..................................................................................................................................... 48
Tables
Table A: Summary of Previous Archaeological Investigations Within Site CA-SDI-5017 ................... 8
Table B: Intact Subsurface Midden Deposits, Admiral Hartman Family Housing Project .................. 13
Table C: Taxonomy, Geographic Setting, Land Use Vegetation, and Buried Site Probability
for Soil Units in and Near the Project Area ............................................................................. 21
Figures
Figure 1: Project Location Map .............................................................................................................. 2
Figure 2: Project Location on an 1857 Coastal Survey Map .................................................................. 5
Figure 3: Location of the Village of La Rinconada de Jamo .................................................................. 6
LSA ASSOCIATES, INC. FINAL GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
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Figure 4: Previous Studies within the CA-SDI-5017 Site Boundary ..................................................... 7
Figure 5: Soil stratigraphy from Stations 3+74.37 and 4+23 +/- (Bissell 1992) .................................. 11
Figure 6: Soil stratigraphy from Stations 3+74.37 and 4+23 +/- (Bissell 1992) .................................. 12
Figure 7: Geologic Map of the Project Area and Surrounding Area .................................................... 17
Figure 8: Soils Map of the Project Area and Surrounding Area .......................................................... 19
Figure 10: Photograph of Pacific Drilling Rig Used for Sample Collection ........................................ 36
Figure 11: Photograph of Drill Operation, Mission Bay Drive at LSA-2, Facing Northwest .............. 37
Figure 12: Photograph of Drill Rig at LSA-4, Facing West ................................................................. 37
Figure 13: Photograph of Drill Rig at LSA-8, Facing North-northwest ............................................... 38
Figure 14: Photograph of LSA-1, LSA-2, and LSA-3 Core Samples .................................................. 39
Figure 15: Photograph of LSA-4, LSA-5, LSA-6, and LSA-7 Core Samples ..................................... 40
Figure 16: Photograph of LSA-8, LSA-9, and LSA-10 Core Samples ................................................ 41
Figure 17: Schematic Drawing of the Pedostratigraphy for the LSA Cores ........................................ 42
Figure 18: Close-up Photograph of Oxidized Zone in LSA-5 at 19 to 28 cm Below Surface
(3.47-3.38 m MSL) (19 cm is at left and 28 cm on right) ....................................................... 44
Appendices
Appendix A: Soils Series Descriptions
Appendix B: Core Descriptions Table
Appendix C: Resumes
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APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
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INTRODUCTION
The City of San Diego (City) plans to construct approximately 4.5 miles of new and replacement
sewer and water main lines north of the Mission Bay Golf Course, and west of Rose Creek. The depth
of the new sewer main alignment for Sewer Group 786 will range from 9 to 20 feet deep. The depth
of the new water main alignment for Sewer and Water Group 955 will be up to 6 feet deep. Both new
alignments are within the recorded boundary of the prehistoric/ethnohistoric village site of La
Rinconada (CA-SDI-5017).
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The project area is located on the northeast side of Mission Bay in the City of San Diego, in the
communities of Pacific Beach and Mission Bay Park. The project includes areas along Mission Bay
Drive, Grand Avenue, Figueroa Boulevard, Qunicy Street, Lee Street, Magnolia Avenue, Hornblend
Street, Bond Street, Garnet Avenue, Del Rey Street, and Rosewood Street. Specifically, the project
area is located on the La Jolla, California United State Geological Survey 7.5-minute topographic
map, within the Pueblo Lands of San Diego Land Grant (Figure 1).
LSA was tasked to assess the project area for the presence of archaeological resources, which
included geoarchaeological test core sampling and soils evaluation along selected portions of the
proposed alignments for Sewer Group 786 and Sewer and Water Group 955.
LSA completed all items pursuant to the City’s Historical and Paleontological Resources Guidelines,
and Section 01560 – Environmental Protection of the Contract Documents. The Project Archaeologist
assigned to this project fulfilled the professional qualifications required by the City. All work was
conducted within the City’s right-of-way and in accordance with California Environmental Quality
Act (CEQA) guidelines and the City of San Diego Land Development Code, Historical Resources
Guidelines (2004). The City was the Lead Agency for CEQA compliance for the project and the
project was submitted to Development Services Department (DSD) for CEQA and permit review.
PERSONNEL
The testing program was completed by LSA cultural resources staff and by Dr. Jeffrey Homburg,
Senior Geoarchaeologist at Catena Affiliated. Both Dr. Homburg and all LSA staff meet all Federal,
State, and local requirement qualifications.
Mr. Roderic McLean was the Project Manager and Project Archaeologist. Mr. McLean is a member
of the Register of Professional Archaeologists (RPA), is a San Diego County certified consultant, and
meets the Secretary of Interior standards for a qualified archaeologist. Mr. McLean has an M.A. in
Anthropology from California State University, Fullerton and over 20 years of experience in local
archaeology.
SOURCE : USGS 7.5' Q uadrang le (La Jo lla, 1975)
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FIGURE 1
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Project Location
Project
Location
San
Diego
County
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Project Vicinity
0 1000 2000
FEET
Project Location
LEGEND
Water Main Ne w Alignment (Job 955)
Sewer Main New Align ment (Job 786)
Sewer Main Rep lace-in-Place (J ob 786)
LSA ASSOCIATES, INC. FINAL GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
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Dr. Jeffrey Homburg with Catena Affiliated works as an archaeologist and soil scientist in North
America, Africa, and Asia. He earned B.A. and M.A. degrees in anthropology, and a Ph.D. in soil
science. He is also a member of the RPA, and an adjunct professor in the School of Anthropology at
the University of Arizona. Dr. Homburg has refereed journal articles and authored over 100
publications including books, monographs, and articles. Dr. Homburg performed all soils analysis and
wrote the majority of this results report.
Mr. Spencer Bietz was the on-site archaeological monitor for all coring activities. He has over 11
years of experience and has been certified by the City and County of San Diego as an archaeological
monitor. He earned a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of California at San Diego.
All excavation and laboratory work was observed by a Native American monitor from Misschief
Cultural Monitoring, Inc.
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ARCHAEOLOGICAL SETTING
The proposed project is within the recorded boundaries of the prehistoric/ethnohistoric village of La
Rinconada de Jamo (CA-SDI-5017), a large site according to Malcolm Rogers, “second to only
SDM-W-1” in terms of size (Rogers n.d.). This site is one of the locations listed in the 1769 Portolá
Expedition record as a large, peaceful village just north of Mission Bay at the south end of Rose
Canyon. During the Mission Period, only a few of the inhabitants from Rinconada were given
baptismal rites, and none was associated with the 1775 attack on Mission San Diego de Alcalá. Figure
2 shows the project location on an 1857 Coastal Survey map and in relation to the Mission Bay
Shoreline. By the early 1930s, the community of Pacific Beach had become heavily populated. The
boundaries of Site CA-SDI-5017 encompass a substantial portion of the proposed sewer and water
alignments. This resource is discussed in detail below.
SITE CA-SDI-5017
The majority of the project area is within the recorded boundaries of the prehistoric/ethnohistoric
village of La Rinconada de Jamo (CA-SDI-5017) (Figure 3). This Native American village site was
first encountered by the Spanish in 1769 by Don Gaspár de Portolá on a trip from San Diego to
Monterey (Carrico 1977). Initially the contact was peaceful, but relations between the Native
Americans and the rogue Spanish soldiers had soured by 1772. The village name of “Rinconada” is
listed in mission records, but also under Rincon and by the Kumeyaay names Jamio, Japmo, and
Jamo (Carrico 1977:33).
Previous Archaeology
Figure 4 shows the locations of all previous archaeological projects at site CA-SDI-5017. The site
was originally recorded by Malcolm Rogers of the San Diego Museum of Man in the 1920s–1930s as
SDM-W-150 (Rose Canyon Site) and SDM-W-152 (Rogers n.d.). SDM-W-150 was located at the
mouth of Rose Canyon and trenching at this site and SDM-W-152 to the east yielded “many cobble
hearths … and … we found four Y-III house pits all with cobbles and fire broken rock ruins.”
Additional cultural material included ceramics, groundstone, charcoal, shell midden, and obsidian.
Rogers also remarked that SDM-W-150 was “a rich site and has been collected on for years.
Thousands of manos have been taken from this site and hundreds of metates.” Even in Rogers’
original account, it was clear the site had been severely disturbed by “deep plowing, erosion and
rodents.” The area immediately east of SDM-W-150, called SDM-W-152, included midden soil and
cobble hearth features representative of intermittent camping (Rogers n.d.).
In 1979, Richard Norwood recorded a portion of Site CA-SDI-5017 at the location of the Bluffside
Townhomes Project along Pacifica Drive (Norwood 1979). Artifacts included “5 hammerstones, 2
core fragments, ± 20 flakes/debitage, 1 projectile point, 100 metate fragments, 1,000+ manos, thermal
fractured rock, 3 potsherds, and charcoal.” Norwood also described the site as a “well-developed shell
midden.” The deposit had been disturbed by clearing, planting of ornamental trees, other landscaping,
SOURCE : San Diego Ba y Coastal Surv ey Map , 1857
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FIGURE 2
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Project Location as Shown on 1857 Coastal Survey Map
0 1000 2000
FEET
LEGEND
Sewer Main New Align ment (Job 786)
Water Main Ne w Alignment (Job 955)
Project Location
SOURCE : USGS 7.5' Q uadrang le (La Jo lla, 1975)
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FIGURE 3
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Project Location and Site CA-SDI-5017
0 1000 2000
FEET
Site Bou ndary CA-S DI-5017
LEGEND
Water Main Ne w Alignment (Job 955)
Sewer Main New Align ment (Job 786)
Sewer Main Rep lace-in-Place (J ob 786)
Recorded Site Boun dary of CA-SDI-5017
SOURCE : CGS (2016)
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FIGURE 4
Previous Archaeological Studies, CA-SDI-5017
LEGEND
Recorded Site Bo undary o f CA-SDI -5017
Previous Studies
Negative Results
Positive Results
0 500 1000
FEET
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
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APRIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
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and the construction of the existing residence in 1958. One historic-age feature was observed,
consisting of a cement birdbath “made from a whole metate with the base laden with over 300
manos.” The date in the cement is November 1, 1918. Norwood also noted that manos and metates
have been incorporated into retaining walls throughout the property (1979).
Since initial recording by Rogers and Norwood, 11 cultural resource investigations have been
completed within the limits of CA-SDI-5017. Six of these investigations yielded positive results for
intact subsurface midden deposits (Table A). In addition, a geoarchaeological assessment of the
Mission Bay Golf Course by Homburg et al. (2014) found no traces of CA-SDI-5017 or any other
cultural resources within the recorded site boundary. A geologic trenching study by Lindvall and
Rockwell (1995), however, did reveal cultural material dated to approximately 9000 years before
present (B.P.) just outside the northeast boundary of CA-SDI-5017.
Table A: Summary of Previous Archaeological Investigations Within Site CA-SDI-5017
Report Author
Year
Project Name/Location
Summary of Findings
Rogers
1020s &
1930s
Original recording of La
Rinconada village
CA-SDI-5017 originally
recorded by Malcom Rogers as
SDM-W-150 (Rose Canyon
Site) and SDM-W-152
Norwood
1979
Bluffside Townhomes
Project, on Pacifica Drive
Recorded a “well-developed
shell midden” with 1,000+
groundstone artifacts in part of
CA-SDI-5017
Chace
1979
Testing for Bella Pacific
Park project in Pacific
Beach
Surficial midden found, but four
augers suggested that no intact
subsurface midden was
preserved
Huett
1979
Survey and testing for
Pacifica Bluffs Townhomes
project
Midden found from the surface
to average and maximum
depths of 80 cm and 120 cm
depth, respectively, in three test
units and 99 post holes
Winterrowd and
Cardenas
1987
Bella Pacific Park Planned
Residential Unit
A “rich and varied intact village
midden deposit” found in three
2-meter (m) by 2-m test units.
Midden was 150200 cm thick
and was dated to ~700 to 2500
B.P.
Bissel
1992
Monitoring and excavation
at Balboa Ave. and Pico
intersection
Dense midden with possible
earth oven dated to ~6002200
B.P. found at 30100 cm depth
Cooley and Toren
1992
Testing for Mission bay
Sewage Interceptor System
in Crown Point-Rose Creek
area
Disturbed midden found in all
but one of six trenches and in
all three 1-m by 1-m test units.
One shell was dated at ~2900
B.P.
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Table A: Summary of Previous Archaeological Investigations Within Site CA-SDI-5017
Report Author
Year
Project Name/Location
Summary of Findings
Kyle and Gallegos
1994
Testing for City of San
Diego Water Utilities Dept.
Sewer &Water Replacement
Group Job 518-A in Grand
Ave.-Rose Creek area
Artificial fill deposits and no
cultural deposits found in seven
trenches
Lindvall and
Rockwell
1995
A buried hearth, chopper, and
FAR found in a geologic trench
across the Rose Canyon Fault.
Argillic horizon associated with
cultural remains dated to about
9000 B.P.
Gallegos and
Associates
1997
Data recovery for Pico Way
Water Main, City of San
Diego Group Job 518B,
west of I-5 on Pico
Midden identified from 20108
cm deep in five trenches and 5
1-m by 1-m test units. Midden
was dated at ~700 to 1150 B.P.
Ghablain and
Moslak
2001
De Anza Harbor Resort and
Golf Development Project
No midden found in 124.6-acre
survey and ten trenches. Part of
the survey was on the Mission
Bay Golf Course
Zepeda Herman
2005
Testing for YWCA
Transitional Housing project
at intersection of Soledad
Mountain Rd. and Garnet
Ave.
Intact midden found from 1 to
2.5 m below surface in seven
shovel pits and seven trenches
Garia-Herbst
2008
Monitoring for Admiral
Hartman Family Housing
Gas Line Replacement
Project
Midden found in 13 of 155
residential parcels of housing
project that ranges from 30 to
130 cm deep.
Robbins-Wade
2014
IHA for proposed
maintenance activities at
Mission Bay High School
and Pacific Beach Dr./Olney
St. channels
Survey identified shell, but due
to proximity to Mission Bay
and lack of artifacts, shell
determined to be natural
Homburg, Miller,
and McLean
2014
Geoarcheological
assessment of Mission Bay
Golf Course
No midden found to depth of 8
feet in 59 cores, with hydraulic
fill deposits covering the former
tidal flat over the entire golf
course.
In 1979, two separate archaeological assessment and testing programs occurred within portions of the
site. Paul G. Chace & Associates conducted an archaeological assessment for the Bella Pacific Park
Project in Pacific Beach, consisted of a records search file search, a pedestrian survey of the proposed
project area, and the excavation of several subsurface augers to determine the nature of subsurface
soil deposits (Chace 1979). The survey revealed that although the majority of the central portion of
the existing drive-in theater was paved, several areas of exposed soils were present around the
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periphery of the project area (Exposures A–E). Four soil auger test holes were excavated in areas
where dark midden soil was observed at the surface. Test augers 1, 2, and 3 were excavated within the
northwest corner of the project area, northeast of a surficial midden deposit (Exposure A), and
contained no evidence of a subsurface midden deposit. A fourth auger test hole was excavated along
the western edge of the project area adjacent to another observable surface midden location (Exposure
B). Test Auger 4 revealed that a subsurface midden deposit was present, although the deposit was
overlain by light-colored clayey cobbly soil and may have been secondarily deposited due to
landform slumping. Chace theorized that if intact midden was still present within the project area
boundary, it would most like be present as a subsurface deposit due to the majority of the original
landform having been removed during the construction of the drive-in theater.
Near the same time, Archaeological Consulting and Technology (ACT) conducted cultural resource
testing in order to determine potential impacts to the site from the Pacifica Bluffs Townhomes project
(Huett 1979). The cultural resource testing was carried out following a pedestrian survey and cultural
resource sample testing of the proposed project area. The testing effort carried out by ACT consisted
of the excavation of 109 post holes and three units. The majority of the post holes tested positive for
subsurface cultural resources and midden, with the postholes located along the western and southern
limits of the project area returning negative results. The three units were excavated to depths ranging
from 100–156 cm below ground surface (bgs). Test Unit 1 contained intact cultural deposits and
midden from approximately 30 cm to 100 cm bgs, with sterile soils present below 130 cm. Pockets of
midden and artifacts were present below 100 cm, but were theorized to have been transported there
due to bioturbation (rodents). Test Unit 2 was excavated to a depth of 120 cm and contained intact
cultural deposits in all levels, with sterile soils appearing at 120 cm. Test Unit 3 was excavated to a
total depth of 100 cm, and contained intact cultural deposits to the same depth. A posthole was
attempted at the 100 cm level, but reached bedrock at 102 cm. The three units produced over 1,400
artifacts including lithic debitage, projectile points, knife blades, hammerstones, cores/scrapers,
unifacial and bifacial manos, shell beads and pendants, bone beads, ceramic sherds, bone tools, as
well as fire-affected rock fragments and remnants of red ochre. Following the completion of testing
effort, ACT theorized that the subsurface cultural deposit present within CA-SDI-5017 existing to
depths averaging approximately 80 cm below surface (Huett 1979). Sterile soils, in general, usually
consisted of a layer of yellow sandy loam or reddish compacted soils.
An indexing program for the preservation of Site CA-SDI-5017 was completed in 1986 as part of the
Bella Pacific Park Planned residential unit by Winterrowd and Cardenas, resulting in the
interpretation that the site is a “rich and varied intact village midden deposit” (Winterrowd and
Cardenas 1987). In addition to background research on the site, Winterrowd and Cardenas excavated
three 2-meter × 2-meter units and recovered thousands of artifacts including “groundstone tools,
flaked stone tools, debitage, ceramics, bone artifacts, shell artifacts, historic artifacts, shell ecofacts,
animal bones, fish bone, macrobotanical remains, thermally-affected stone, and charcoal.” The three
units contained intact midden deposits ranging between 150 cm and 200 cm in overall depth. Several
samples of marine shell from Unit 1 were used for radiocarbon dating, and produced date ranges
between 650 +/- 75 and 2580 +/- 105. It was determined that the site had likely been occupied for at
least 2,500 years based on the artifact assemblage, and that it could have been used for ceremonial
purposes based on the recovery of a ceramic pipe fragment and red-tailed hawk remains (Winterrowd
and Cardenas 1987).
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A monitoring and excavation program at the intersection of Balboa Avenue and Pico Street in 1992
resulted in the recovery of hundreds of artifacts including groundstone tools, chipped lithic tools,
flakes, debitage, bone tools, shell tools, shell decorations, a charmstone fragment, shell, terrestrial and
marine mammal remains, charcoal, and fire-affected rock (Bissell 1992: 13-30). One feature,
described as a “rock pilemay be the remains of an earth oven” contained three granitic metate
fragments, two granitic mano fragments, two sandstone mano fragments, and a quartzite chopper.
Bissell also notes that much of the midden was likely removed during urbanization of the area and
that the upper part of the midden has probably been destroyed (1992). The midden deposit was
observed at two locations (Sta. 3+74.7 and Sta. 4+23 +/-) that displayed similar depositional
stratigraphy, with both locations consisting of undisturbed deposits overlain by a top layer of mixed
soils containing disturbed cultural deposits and historic-era debris (Figures 5 and 6). Samples of
marine shell from both of the locations resulted in date ranges from 570 +/- 60 to 2200 +/- 70 and
2410 +/- 70 to 3410 +/- 60. The midden deposits and observed feature are about 1,000 feet west-
northwest of the location of LSA-10 and about 1,500 feet north-northeast LSA-5.
Figure 5: Soil stratigraphy from Stations 3+74.37 and 4+23 +/- (Bissell 1992)
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Figure 6: Soil stratigraphy from Stations 3+74.37 and 4+23 +/- (Bissell 1992)
In 1992, preliminary test trenching was conducted within the Crown Point/Rose Creek area as part of
the cultural resource testing program for the Mission Bay Sewage Interceptor System, Phase V
(Cooley and Toren 1992). A total of six trenches and three 1-meter by 1-meter test units were
excavated to identify and potentially evaluate subsurface cultural deposits present within portions of
the proposed sewer interceptor improvements. All of the trenches except for Trench 3 were positive
for cultural materials; however, none of the trenches displayed evidence of intact midden deposits and
the cultural materials retrieved from the trenches and units appeared to exist within previously
disturbed depositional contexts. One sample of marine shell was collected for testing, and resulted in
a date range of 2860 +/- 50 (Cooley and Toren 1992).
Two years later, Gallegos & Associates conducted cultural resource testing for the City of San Diego
Water Utilities Department Sewer and Water Replacement Group Job 518-A (Kyle and Gallegos
1994). The project consisted of a proposed replacement of approximately 1,200 linear feet of existing
water line along Grand Avenue over Rose Creek in Pacific Beach, completely within the previously
defined boundary for Site CA-SDI-5017. The testing program consisted of seven backhoe trenches
excavated adjacent to Grand Avenue within the City of San Diego right-of-way. Trenches 1, 2, and 3
were excavated on the south side of Grand Avenue, east of Rose Creek, in a dirt access road along the
north side of the Mission Bay Playing Field. Trenches 4 through 7 were excavated on the north side
of Grand Avenue, west of Rose Creek, in a dirt strip between the sidewalk and a chain link fence
bordering an elementary school. All seven trenches were excavated to a depth of approximately 1.5
meters (5 feet) below the surface and ranged between 3 and 8 meters in overall length. The testing
program did not uncover any previously unidentified subsurface cultural deposits adjacent to the
1,200-foot long project area. Trenches 1 through 3, located east of Rose Creek, contained fill soils
overlying intact marine deposits. Trenches 4 through 7, which were located west of Rose Creek,
identified fill soils extending to depths ranging from approximately 0.5 m to 1.0 m. Even though no
cultural subsurface deposits were observed, cultural resource monitoring was recommended as the
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proposed project was within the previously recorded site boundary of site CA-SDI-5017 (Kyle and
Gallegos 1994).
In January 1997, Gallegos & Associates conducted a data recovery program for the Pico Way Water
Main, as part of the City of San Diego Group Job 518B (Gallegos and Associates 1997). The data
recovery program was located west of Interstate 5 on Pico Way, in the community of Pacific Beach.
The program included the excavation of five trenches using a backhoe in addition to the excavation of
three 1 × 1 m units. Trenches 1 and 4 were positive for cultural materials and both contained intact
midden deposits (Trench 1 from 20–70 cm and Trench 4 from 20–40 cm). Trench 3 was positive for
cultural materials, however, contained no evidence of midden. Trench 2 and Trench 5 were negative
for cultural materials and intact midden deposits. Unit 1 was positive for cultural materials and
contained an intact midden deposit from 80–108 cm. Unit 2 was also positive for cultural resources
and contained an intact deposit from 20–40 cm. Unit 3 also contained both cultural materials and an
intact midden deposit (present from 20–40 cm). Three samples of marine shell were collected and
tested for radiocarbon dates. Two samples were used from Unit 2, and produced a date range of 1110
+/- 50 to 1150 +/- 50. The third sample was used from Trench 1 and produced a date of 680 +/- 50
(Gallegos and Associates 1997).
Exploration for subsurface cultural deposits within the southern portion of the site occurred in 2001
for the De Anza Harbor Resort and Golf Development Project (Ghabhlain and Moslak 2001). The
project area consisted of 124.6 acres, portions of which included the Mission Bay Golf Course. A
pedestrian survey and the mechanical excavation of 10 trenches within the northern portion of the
golf course were conducted. No cultural materials were observed in either the test trenches or during
the survey (Ghablain and Moslak 2001).
In 2005, test excavations for National Historic Preservation Act Section 106 compliance were
undertaken as part of the YWCA Transitional Housing Construction Project (Zepeda-Herman 2005).
A total of nine shovel test pits (STPs) and seven backhoe trenches were excavated northeast of the
intersection of Soledad Mountain Road and Garnet Avenue. Cultural materials were recovered from
each of the nine STPs, although the majority appeared to exist in semi-disturbed conditions. The
seven test trenches revealed the presence of an undisturbed cultural deposit observable as early as 70
cm bgs and extending to between 135 cm and 275 cm in overall depth. The undisturbed deposit,
designated as Stratum D, was later defined as existing from 1.0 to 1.5 m bgs to approximately 2.5 m
bgs. Recovered artifacts included lithic debitage, ceramic sherds, ground stone items, FAR, charcoal,
faunal remains, and marine shell (Zepeda-Herman 2005).
Three years later, ASM conducted cultural resource monitoring for the Admiral Hartman Family
Housing Gas Line Replacement Project (Garcia-Herbst 2008). The project consisted of the
installation of gas services to approximately 155 residential locations in addition to preliminary test
trenching along proposed gas line replacement corridors. Of these locations, 13 were observed as
containing intact subsurface deposits (Table B).
Table B: Intact Subsurface Midden Deposits, Admiral Hartman Family Housing Project
Location
Deposit Depth
Top (cm)
Deposit Depth
Bottom (cm)
Additional Testing/Recovery
2602 Haskell Street
86
Not explored
None
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Table B: Intact Subsurface Midden Deposits, Admiral Hartman Family Housing Project
Location
Deposit Depth
Top (cm)
Deposit Depth
Bottom (cm)
Additional Testing/Recovery
2612 Haskell Street (bore pit east of
driveway)
55 115 None
2612 Haskell Street (bore pit west
of driveway)
80 110 None
2622 Haskell Street
40
48
1 × 0.5 m test unit
2596 Pico Way
60
Not observed
None
4725 Pico Street
30
100
0.5 × 0.25 m (STP)
4765 Pico Street (bore pit east of
driveway)
80 130 1 × 0.5 m test unit
4765 Pico Street (bore pit west of
driveway)
60 110 0.7 × 0.5 m test unit
4765 Pico Street (bore trench)
60
Not observed
None
4765 Pico Street (riser trench)
60
90
None
4770 Pico Street (bore pit)
75
110
0.8 × 0.5 m test unit
4770 Pico Street (bore pit extension
trench)
75 105 0.8 × 0.5 m test unit
4770 Pico Street (street trench)
75
90
1.0 × 0.4 m STP
The intact midden deposits observed within the 13 locations demonstrated a subsurface presence
ranging from between 30 cm bgs to as much as 130 cm bgs. Auxiliary test units/STPs were excavated
at seven of the locations. Artifacts recovered during the monitoring and excavation included lithic
tools, groundstone tools, flakes/debitage, animal bone, and shell. No samples of marine shell were
tested for radio carbon dates (Garcia-Herbst 2008). It was noted that intact deposits of midden still
exist in the site area and the potential for encountering additional archaeological material is high
(Garcia-Herbst 2008).
In 2014, Affinis conducted an Individual Historical Assessment (IHA) for proposed maintenance
activities within the Mission Bay High School and Pacific Beach Drive/Olney Street channels for
compliance with the Master Storm Water System Maintenance Program (MMP, Master Maintenance
Program). The Mission Bay High School (MBHS) and Pacific Drive/Olney Street (PBO) channels, as
well as potential access routes, staging areas, and temporary spoils storage locations, were surveyed
for cultural resources (Robbins-Wade 2014). Both the MBHS and PBO channels were located west of
Interstate 5 in Pacific Beach, north of Mission Bay, in unsectioned lands in Township 16 South,
Range 3 West on the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) 7.5-minute La Jolla, California quadrangle
map. Both channels were surveyed in February 2010, and cultural resource monitoring of emergency
maintenance activities/clearing of both channels was conducted between February 4 and 12, 2010.
The cultural resource survey resulted in the observation of shell within the soil atop both the MBHS
and PBO channels. The shell at the MBHS channel was potentially cultural in origin; however, no
additional artifacts were observed. Due to the close proximity of the PBO channel to Mission Bay, the
shell observed at that location was deemed to be naturally deposited and not the result of cultural
activities (Robbins-Wade 2014). Following the survey, the cultural resource monitoring program was
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enacted during channel maintenance and cleanup activities; however, no additional cultural materials
were observed.
While excavating backhoe trenches for a geologic study of tectonic displacement along the Rose
Canyon Fault across a buried stream channel just outside of the northeast boundary recorded for CA-
SDI-5017, Lindvall and Rockwell (1995: 24,126) found “cultural artifacts” in Trench 8, one of 11
trenches excavated below the asphalt of the parking lot for San Diego Gas & Electric Beach Cities
Operating Center, an equipment storage facility. They found a lithic chopping implement and a fire
hearth marked by a concentration of charcoal, ash, and FAR at the top of stratigraphic Unit D, a
gravelly silty clay, colluvial or a debris flow deposit with a calibrated radiocarbon date of ~9300 B.P.
(Rockwell, personal communication, September 16, 2016). This find makes it the oldest cultural
resource documented yet identified in the immediate area of CA-SDI-5017.
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GEOLOGIC CONTEXT
The project area is in the coastal portion of the Peninsular Ranges Geomorphic Province, a region
characterized by northwest-trending structural blocks and intervening fault zones. The Province
extends over more than 900 miles from the Los Angeles Basin to the southern tip of Baja California,
and it varies in width from about 30 to 100 miles. Bedrock units in the Peninsular Ranges Province
include Jurassic (~144–206 million years old, or mya) metavolcanic and metasedimentary rocks, and
Cretaceous (~65144 mya) igneous rocks of the Southern California Batholith, a large intrusive
igneous body). The coastal portion of the Province in San Diego County typically has a sequence of
upper Cretaceous, Tertiary (~2–65 mya), and Quaternary (less than ~2 mya) marine and non-marine
sedimentary strata that form a dissected coastal plain. Figure 7 shows artificial fill deposits covering
the project area, with Old Paralic deposits (late to middle Pleistocene); and young colluvial deposits
(Holocene and late Pleistocene) flanking the lower elevation areas of the project area.
The project area is in the coastal plain portion of San Diego County (Griner and Pride 1976), a coastal
strip that is a 130 kilometers (km) long by 5 to 15 km wide shoreline between the Peninsular Ranges
and the Pacific Ocean (Weber 1963). The project area is located on a late Holocene stream/fan
terrace, on the lower reach of the Rose Canyon north of the tidal flats of Mission Bay (a portion of the
bay now called Fiesta Bay). About 1 km north of the project area, the Rose Canyon drainage has
entrenched a narrow canyon along the Rose Canyon Fault. There is no standardized nomenclature for
the lower (80–120 thousand years ago [ka]) marine terraces in the San Diego area, but they are
commonly referred to as the Bird Rock and Nestor terraces, respectively (Kern and Rockwell 1992).
Bay Point deposits consist of a lower nearshore marine sub-unit and an overlying alluvial or eolian
sub-unit. However, as noted by Lajoie (1979), the complex set of deposits that characterize the Bay
Point Formation makes it difficult to divide it into uniform, laterally traceable subunits. Non-marine
alluvial Bay Point Formation deposits have also been mapped as river terraces that represent relict
late Pleistocene floodplain alluvium (Weber 1982).
Rose Canyon cuts into a Quaternary marine terrace known as the Nestor terrace, a prominent wave-
cut platform that rises 20 to 23 meters (65 to 75 feet) above sea level just inland from the modern
coast (Kennedy and Peterson 1975). The Nestor terrace surface is directly underlain by poorly
consolidated fossiliferous sandstones of the late to middle Pleistocene Bay Point Formation (Kennedy
and Peterson 1975). The Bay Point Formation (which is now referred to as Old Paralic deposits; see
Figure 8) is a near-shore marine and non-marine (talus and slopewash) sedimentary deposit composed
of poorly cemented, light brown sandstone that was deposited on currently-raised wave-cut platforms.
The lithology consists mainly of fine- to medium-grained, silty and clayey sand that is occasionally
interbedded with of sandy clay. It has a maximum thickness of 100 feet or more and it dates to ~0.13
0.08 mya (Kennedy and Peterson 1975; Kennedy and Tan 1977; Tan and Kennedy 1996). The Bay
Point Formation is exposed along the northern shore of Mission Bay, along the San Diego waterfront,
the mouths of major river valleys (e.g., San Diego River, Soledad Valley, Penasquitos Canyon,
Carmel Valley, and San Dieguito Valley), and throughout the city of Coronado.
af
Qyc
Qop6
Qop6
Qyc
Qyc
Qyc
SOURCE : CGS, 2016
I:\RKE160 1\GIS\ProjL oc_Geology.mxd (10 /24/2016)
FIGURE 7
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Project Location and Geologic Units
Project Location
LEGEND
Water Main Ne w Alignment (Job 955)
Sewer Main New Align ment (Job 786)
Sewer Main Rep lace-in-Place (J ob 786)
0 500 1000
FEET
Geologic Map Units
Qop6: O ld Pa ralic deposi ts, Uni t 6, undivid ed (late to middle Pleistocene)
Qyc: Young colluvial deposits (Holocene and late Pleistocene)
Af: Artificia l Fill
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Studies of late Pleistocene and Holocene landscape evolution for coastal drainages in southern
California indicate three major geologic events have taken place over the last 24,000 years (Waters et
al. 1999; Shlemon 1992; Masters 1994). The first involved the deep entrenchment of coastal
drainages between 24 and 18 (ka) in response to a global drop in sea level of at least 120 meters (393
feet) below present levels (Fairbanks 1989; Masters 1988; Muhs et al. 2003). Most coastal drainages
adjusted to this lowered base level by deeply incising their valleys and prograding onto the exposed
continental shelf. The second event began after 18 ka when the formerly incised valleys began to fill
in with sediment that aggraded in response to late-glacial sea level rise. By approximately 8 ka, sea
level had risen to within 16 meters of its modern position. Sea level continued to rise steadily through
the middle to late Holocene until approximately 5 ka. Between 5 and 3 ka, sea levels rose more
rapidly and the rate of sediment deposition increased along coastal streams. After 3 ka, sea level rise
slowed dramatically until it reached its present position.
The final major geologic event occurred approximately 500 years ago when coastal streams incised
their floodplains, thereby creating a low terrace (Waters et al. 1999). Formation of this low terrace
was followed by a brief period of aggradation and then a second pulse of stream incision took place to
form a second low terrace. Most of the project area sits on these two late Holocene terraces. The
episodes of channel incision were most likely caused by increased precipitation associated with El
Nino-Southern Oscillation events over the last 500 years. A period of major flooding has been
recorded in others areas of California around this time (Schimmelmann et al. 1998; Malamud-Roam
et al. 2006).
SOILS MAP DATA
As shown in Figure 8, soils mapped by the Natural Resources Conservation Service (formerly the
Soil Conservation Service) indicate that a portion of the Job 786 sewer is covered by made land (unit
Md in Figure 8), which is artificial fill. Artificial fill is shown as extending west of the Mission Bay
Golf Course on the opposite side of Rose Inlet and south of Mission Bay Road to DeAnza Point and
the bay. The project area abuts the north side of the Mission Bay Golf Course, just outside of the area
of artificial fill indicated by the soil map. It is noteworthy that the soil map shows made land south of
the project area, which contrasts with the large expanse of artificial fill shown in the geology map
(see Figure 8). A tidal flat area (unit Tl in Figure 8) is located southwest of the project area on the
west side of Rose Inlet. Four units of natural soil were mapped in the project area north of Grand
Avenue (units CsB, HuC, HuE, and OkE in Figure 8). Unit CsB refers to the Corralitos loamy sand, 0
to 5 percent slopes, which is north of Grand Avenue. Unit HuC refers to the Huerhuero-Urban land
complex, 2 to 9 percent slopes, a broader soil map unit located north of Grand Avenue in the eastern
portion of project area; soils of the Huerhuero series in this complex are now subsumed under the
Antioch series and so Huerhuero is now obsolete as a soil series name. HuE refers to the Huerhuero
(now Antioch). OkE refers to the Olivenhain-Urban complex. All of these soil map units are
described in much more detail in Appendix A, and soils of units Corralitos, Antioch (formerly
Huerhuero), and Olivenhain series are summarized below in Table C.
Corralitos soils are moderately extensive in small coastal valleys from central California southward.
They are classified as Mixed, thermic Typic Xeropsamments; these are soils with mixed mineralogy
and a thermic soil temperature regime that are weakly developed and dominated by quartz sand. They
are in the Entisols soil order, soils defined by the presence of A and C horizons and absence of B soil
horizon development (that is, they lack soil structure and there is no accumulation of illuvial, or
SOURCE : CGS, 2016
I:\RKE160 1\GIS\ProjL oc_Soils .mxd (10 /24/2016)
FIGURE 8
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Project Location and Soil Units
Project Location
LEGEND
Water Main Ne w Alignment (Job 955)
Sewer Main New Align ment (Job 786)
Sewer Main Rep lace-in-Place (J ob 786)
USDA Soils
CsB - Corr alitos Loa my Sand
HuC - Huer huero -Urban
HuE - Huer huero Ser ies
Md - Made Land
OkE - Oliv enhai n-Urban
Tf - Tidal Flat
0 500 1000
FEET
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vertically translocated, clay). The weak development of these soils is an indicator that they are young
soils. Corralitos soils typically occur on alluvial fans and in small valleys at elevations of 25 to 1,000
feet, at slopes of 0 to 15 percent. The soils formed in recent sandy alluvium derived from acid
sandstone and related sources, under dry subhumid mesothermal climates with dry somewhat foggy
summers and cool moist winters. They are somewhat excessively drained and have slow runoff and
rapid permeability. Some areas are subject to localized flooding and deposition. Rock fragments are
mostly of gravel size and make up less than 15 percent of the soil and in most pedons less than 5
percent of soil. Textures are sand, loamy sand, fine sand or loamy fine sand to a depth of 40 inches
(~1 meter). Dominant sand sizes are medium and fine sand. Coarse and very coarse sand combined is
less than 35 percent. The profile is stratified, but strata finer than loamy fine sand are lacking to a
depth of more than 40 inches (~1 meter). The soil is dominantly slightly to strongly acid, but some
strata in some pedons are neutral.
As noted previously, the Huerhuero series is now included within the Antioch series. Antioch soils
have light brownish gray and brown, medium acid, loam Ap and Al horizons, light gray A2 horizons,
light yellowish brown yellowish brown, medium acid and moderately alkaline clay and clay loam B2t
horizons. They are classified as Fine, smectitic, thermic Typic Natrixeralfs; these are soils dominated
by smectite clay that have a thermic soil temperature regime, a xeric soil moisture regime, and that
have a Bt horizon (a subsurface horizon characterized by the accumulation of illuvial clay). They are
in the Alfisols soil order, which is defined by the presence of significant alluvial clay and a high base
saturation (which indicates that they are not strongly leached). This level of soil development
indicates that they are significantly older than the Corralitos soils. Antioch soils are on nearly level to
strongly sloping alluvial fans and terraces at elevations below 1,100 feet, with slopes that are usually
less than 3 percent, and they occur along the central and southern Coast Range valleys of California.
They form in areas with subhumid, mesothermal climates, with warm to hot dry summers and cool
moist winters. They are moderately well to somewhat poorly drained, have slow to medium runoff,
and very slow permeability.
Olivenhain soils have brown and reddish brown, medium acid, very cobbly loam A horizons, reddish
brown and red, medium and strongly acid, very cobbly clay B2t horizons, grading to pinkish white
cobbly loam C horizons. They are classified as Clayey-skeletal, kaolinitic, thermic family of Ultic
Palexeralfs. Fine, smectitic, thermic Typic Natrixeralfs; these are soils dominated by smectite clay
that have a thermic soil temperature regime, a xeric soil moisture regime, and that have a Bt horizon
(a subsurface horizon characterized by the accumulation of illuvial clay). They are in the Alfisols soil
order, which is defined by the presence of significant alluvial clay and a high base saturation (which
indicates that they are not strongly leached). This level of soil development indicates that they are
significantly older than the Corralitos soils, as are the Antioch soils. Olivenhain soils are gently
sloping to strongly sloping and are on dissected marine terraces, typically at elevations of 100 to 600
feet. They form in areas with subhumid, mesothermal climates, with warm to hot dry summers and
cool moist winters. They are moderately well to somewhat poorly drained, have slow to medium
runoff, and very slow permeability.
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Table C: Taxonomy, Geographic Setting, Land Use Vegetation, and Buried Site Probability for Soil Units in and Near the Project Area
Map
Unit
Symbol
Soil Map
Unit
Soil Taxonomic
Class (USDA
Soil Taxonomy)
Soil Order
Diagnostic
Subsurface
Horizons
Geographic
Setting
Drainage and
Permeability
Land Use and
Vegetation (in
unurbanized
areas)
Buried Site
Probability
CsB
Corralitos
series
Mixed, thermic
Typic
Xeropsamments
Entisols
None
Alluvial fans and
small valleys at
elevations of 25 to
1,000 feet and 0 to
15 percent slopes.
The soils formed in
recent sandy
alluvium derived
from acid sandstone
and related sources.
Somewhat
excessively drained;
slow runoff; rapid
permeability. Some
areas subject to
localized flooding
and deposition.
Channels and other
flood control
measures now
protect some areas.
Used for range,
dryland crops, urban
development, and for
growing truck crops,
alfalfa, citrus, and
other fruits under
irrigation.
Uncultivated areas
have a cover of
annual grasses,
forbs, coyotebush,
other shrubs, and a
few live oak trees.
High
HuC
Huerhuero
series-Urban
Fine, smectitic,
thermic Typic
Natrixeralfs
Alfisols
Natric
(48–152 cm)
Nearly level to
strongly sloping
alluvial fans and
terraces at elevations
less than 1,100 feet.
Slopes are usually
less than 3 percent.
Moderately well to
somewhat poorly
drained; slow to
medium runoff; very
slow permeability.
Used for production
of annual pasture,
dryfarmed grain,
irrigated row crops,
and urban
development.
Vegetation in
untilled areas
includes annual
grasses, forbs and
weeds with scattered
oaks.
Moderate
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Table C: Taxonomy, Geographic Setting, Land Use Vegetation, and Buried Site Probability for Soil Units in and Near the Project Area
Map
Unit
Symbol
Soil Map
Unit
Soil Taxonomic
Class (USDA
Soil Taxonomy)
Soil Order
Diagnostic
Subsurface
Horizons
Geographic
Setting
Drainage and
Permeability
Land Use and
Vegetation (in
unurbanized
areas)
Buried Site
Probability
HuE
Huerhuero
series
Fine, smectitic,
thermic Typic
Natrixeralfs
Alfisols
Natric
(48–152 cm)
Nearly level to
strongly sloping
alluvial fans and
terraces at elevations
of less than 1,100
feet. Slopes are
usually less than 3
percent.
Moderately well to
somewhat poorly
drained; slow to
medium runoff; very
slow permeability.
Used for production
of annual pasture,
dryfarmed grain,
irrigated row crops,
and urban
development.
Vegetation in
untilled areas
includes annual
grasses, forbs and
weeds with scattered
oaks.
Low to
moderate
Md
Made land
None
None
Coastal terrace and
tidal flat covered by
artificial fill.
Urban development
None
Oke
Olivenhain
series-Urban
Clayey-skeletal,
kaolinitic, thermic
Ultic Palexeralfs
Alfisols
Argillic
(25–107 cm)
Gently sloping to
strongly sloping,
dissected marine
terraces at elevations
less than 600 feet.
Well-drained; slow
or medium runoff;
very slow
permeability.
Used principally for
grazing and urban
development. The
natural vegetation is
flattop buckwheat,
wild oats, chamise,
morning glory,
filaree, soft chess,
and cactus.
Moderate
Tf
Tidal flat
None
None
Tidal flat
Very poorly drained,
slow runoff, high
permeability.
Low
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PALEOENVIRONMENTAL AND ARCHAEOLOGICAL CONTEXT OF
COASTAL SAN DIEGO
On a geologic time scale, California’s coastal wetlands are recent landscape features resulting from
the complex interaction of geological processes (e.g., sedimentation, subsidence, and tectonism) and
global changes in sea level (Nardin et al. 1981). The rapid rise of sea level, resulting from
deglaciation over the past 15,000 years, induced the formation of coastal wetlands by inundating
coastal river valleys to form bays, estuaries, lagoons, and salt marshes (Nardin et al. 1981; Orme
1990). The 110 major coastal wetlands in California range from undeveloped estuaries and marshes
around tidal-flushed river mouths in the north to the highly urbanized saline lagoons, embayments,
and salt marshes in the south, such as the Mission/San Diego Bay area. This diversity results from
California’s position at the edge of a dynamic continental land mass where sea level and land
elevation were in flux during the Holocene. Geologic records associated with estuaries provide a
unique source of information about continental and marine cycles that have affected human
adaptation in the past. These cycles include both short-term components (e.g., seasonality or human
activity) and long-term components (e.g., isostatic or eustatic sea-level changes). Isostatic changes are
caused by changes in the level of the land masses as a result of thermal buoyancy or tectonic effect;
eustatic changes are associated with global changes caused by melting of ice sheets. Sedimentation in
estuaries is influenced by a complex combination of tidal currents, oceanic waves, locally generated
waves, river discharge, precipitation, temperature, and local flora and fauna (Clifton 1982). Also
important are geologic agents like tectonism, subsidence, isostatic and eustatic changes of sea level,
climate change, and human activities that have altered the hydrology, drainage, and topography.
Studies on the evolution of coastal drainages and wetlands in southern California identify three key
phases since 24 ka (Waters 1999; Shlemon 1992; Masters 1994). The first phase involves the deep
entrenchment of coastal drainages between 24 and 18 ka in response to a global drop in sea level of at
least 120 m (393 feet) below present levels (Fairbanks 1989; Inman et al. 2002; Masters 1988, Muhs
2003). Along the lower San Luis Rey and Santa Margarita drainages, deep cores identified
Pleistocene floodplain deposits at depths exceeding 50 m (Masters 1994; Shlemon 1979). Similarly,
Byrd (2004) describes 25 m of Holocene sediment capping late Pleistocene alluvial deposits along
Escondido Creek (San Elijo Lagoon). Along San Mateo and Las Flores Creeks at Camp Pendleton,
thick Holocene deposits have infilled deeply incised late Pleistocene river valleys (Waters et al. 1999;
Byrd 1996). To the north at Ballona Lagoon the “50-foot” gravels, originally identified by Poland
(1959), mark the transgression of the Pacific Ocean around 15 ka (Homburg et al. 2014). Combined,
these findings reveal that the late Pleistocene floodplains of coastal drainages are deeply buried and
housed within valleys or canyons that had significantly more topographic relief than found today.
The second phase began after 18 ka when the formerly incised valleys began to fill in with sediment
(aggrade) in response to late-glacial sea level rise. Most estuaries along the modern coast did not
begin to develop until after 15 ka when rising sea levels shifted the coastline eastward, inundating
river valleys and creating narrow bays (Inman 1983). Along the San Diego coastline initial lagoon
formation has been dated with radiocarbon dating to between 12 and 9 ka, with the earliest dates
coming from San Luis Rey (Masters 1994). Early Holocene lagoon formation has also been dated to
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around 10–9 ka at Las Flores, Agua Hedionda, Batiquitos, San Elijo, and San Dieguito. Many of
these early Holocene lagoons were narrow, relatively sinuous, and open to the ocean (Masters 1994;
Gallegos 1985, 1991; Hubbs et al. 1965; Byrd et al. 2004).
As the marine transgression slowed in the early to middle Holocene after 8 ka, low-energy coastal
environments developed in the drowned river valleys transforming narrow bays into lagoons and
rocky shorelines into sandy beaches (Nardin et al. 1981, Homburg et al. 2014, Inman 1983). During
this phase, sand spits and barriers began to close off some lagoons from the ocean and sedimentation
in the river valleys kept pace or outpaced rising sea levels. Bays and lagoons became increasingly
filled in with alluvium resulting in an expansion of tidal marsh environments at the expense of open-
water lagoons (Atwater et al. 1979). Regionally, the lagoons at San Mateo and Las Flores creeks were
largely filled in with alluvial sediment by 3 ka (Byrd 1996; Waters et al. 1999; Reddy and Pope
2005). Lagoon infilling occurred earlier at Santa Margarita/Ysidora Basin where a brackish-water
marsh had developed by 6 ka (Byrd 2005; Reddy and Pope 2005). By 3.8 ka, Ballona Lagoon was
largely closed to the ocean and continued to shrink in size as a result of infilling (Homburg et al.
2014).
The final phase of coastal stream/wetland evolution began approximately 0.4–0.5 ka when many
coastal streams incised their floodplains, thereby creating a low terrace (Waters 1999). Initial terrace
formation was followed by a short period of aggradation and then a second pulse of stream incision
forming a second low terrace. These episodes of channel incision are most likely the result of
increased El Niño-Southern Oscillation flooding events and have been documented in other areas of
California (Schimmelmann 1998; Malamud-Roam 2006). During these times of increased flooding, a
significant volume of sediment was likely deposited in many coastal wetlands further expanding
shallow marsh and/or terrestrial environments. Lagoon infilling also occurred at a higher rate
following European settlement as extensive landscape disturbance enhanced erosion and increased
sediment loads in coastal drainages (Cole and Wahl 2000).
There has been very little paleoenvironmental work on Mission/San Diego Bay. Although many coastal
lagoons and estuaries in California were formed with the rise in sea level prior to and during the
Holocene, the geologic and settlement histories of these lagoons differ. In general, the overall trend of
increasing freshwater influence during the Holocene is similar among southern California wetlands, but
physiographic, tectonic, and climatic differences affect such features as lagoon size and sedimentation
rates, which, in turn, affect salinity rates and biotic communities. Common to all of the lagoon histories
is the rise in sea level, which flooded coastal valleys about 10,000 years ago, followed by sea level
stabilizing about 3,000- -- 4,000 years ago and then formation of coastal barriers (e.g., the cobble barrier at
Batiquitos Lagoon and sand-bar barriers at the Ballona and Las Flores lagoons). The stabilization of sea
level and the formation of barriers led to the closure of some lagoons to the ocean and the rapid sediment
infilling of lagoon basins as the outlets to the ocean were closed. In some cases, lagoons continued to
function as shallow saltwater mudflats, producing shellfish throughout the Holocene; in other cases,
lagoons functioned as freshwater mudflats, with an increase in plant resources but a loss of lagoonal
shellfish. In still other cases, lagoons simply closed (for the most part) to the ocean, and with the lack of
saltwater, shellfish died off. Some of these closed lagoons, such as Batiquitos Lagoon about 1,500 years
ago (Gallegos 1987), reopened to form shallow mudflats with shellfish.
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The greatest sedimentation rates generally occurred after 4,000 B.P. after sea level stabilized, especially for
those lagoons where sand or cobble bars formed. Infilling of lagoons, however, may not have been caused
solely by the stabilization of sea level------it may also have been caused by higher precipitation at about 3800
B.P., as noted by Enzel et al. (1992) for the Mojave River drainage basin and by Davis (1992) for San
Joaquin Marsh. The period of increased lagoon sedimentation in the late Holocene resulted in
extensive burial of coastal landforms particularly along lagoon margins and lower drainages. Buried
archaeological sites have been well-documented in these settings across the southern California Bight
(Byrd 1996; Homburg et al. 2014; Reddy and Pope 2004; Pope 2003; Waters et al. 1999; Smith
1986).
The paleogeography and settlement history of lagoons in southern California are, however, unevenly
documented. In most cases, information on settlement and subsistence is available from archaeological
investigations, but independent data for paleogeographic reconstruction are sparse or absent. The
following discussion reviews paleoenvironmental research and human occupation along the California
coast, focusing on the 130 km San Diego County coastline. This discussion is by no means
comprehensive, but instead highlights previous research on human occupation of the region.
Rudimentary information on lagoon evolution shows that Mission/San Diego Bay formed prior to 6000
B.P., with occupation of the San Diego River valley and bay spanning from ca. 8000 B.P. to historical-
period contact (Masters 1998). Dramatic shifts in settlement and subsistence occurred in the Late
Millingstone (4950- -- 3000 B.P.) (also referred to as the Hunting Culture period by Jones, Stevens, et al.
2007) and Intermediate (3000- -- 1000 B.P.) periods. As population increased, use of estuary resources
intensified, and resources from the outer coast were incorporated into the diet. The early Millingstone
occupation consisted of short-term campsites used by small groups of people who focused on the use of
nearby estuary and terrestrial resources. Shellfish, elasmobranch (sharks and rays), and schooling fish,
such as silversides, along with terrestrial mammals, were the mainstays of the diet (Jones, Stevens, et al.
2007; Mikkelsen et al. 2000).
North of the San Diego coast, the lagoons in the Ballona, Bolsa Chica, and Newport Bays have been
subject to integrated paleoenvironmental and archaeological research (Davis 1992, 1996, 1998; Grenda et
al. 1998; Homburg et al. 2014; Mason et al. 1991, 1992). The paleogeography and settlement history of
lagoons and estuaries of the San Diego coastline are much better documented than are those of many
other areas of the southern California coastline. As a result, demographic and land use histories of this
region have focused more on their relationship to the evolution of these lagoons and estuaries than have
those of other regions of the southern California coast. In fact, understanding the paleogeography of these
lagoons and estuaries has been crucial to interpreting the history of human occupation in the region.
According to the most widely accepted reconstruction, large, semi-sedentary populations focused on
resource-rich bays and estuaries during the Millingstone and Intermediate periods (Gallegos 1985, 1992;
Warren 1968). Shellfish served as a dietary staple, although nuts and grasses were important components
of the diet, and hunting and fishing were much less important. This adaptive strategy persisted largely
unchanged for several thousand years, as long as shellfish were plentiful in the coastal lagoons. A major
abandonment or depopulation of the coast occurred after 4000 B.P. as a result of extensive infilling of
local lagoons and estuaries that caused a decline in shellfish populations. Occupation is believed to have
then shifted inland to river valleys, where populations intensified exploitation of small, terrestrial animals
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and plant resources. Coastal occupation was limited to seasonal or short-term occupations, with a possible
slight increase between 1200 and 1600 B.P. More recent evidence from the northern San Diego coast,
however, suggests that occupation flourished throughout the Late period along the northern San Diego
coast, beginning around A.D. 700 and becoming more highly developed after A.D. 1200, when site
density increased, the distance between major residential sites decreased, and numerous specialized short-
term occupation sites appeared. At the same time that this strong logistically organized coastal settlement
pattern developed, there was a shift toward increased reliance on smaller, less productive resources, and a
more exploitation of the littoral zone. These settlement and subsistence patterns in northern San Diego
imply potentially profound changes in hunter-gatherer communities and may be correlated with
population pressure, increased territoriality, greater settlement permanence, and cultural changes
associated with the evolving landscapes of the San Diego coastline. As happened elsewhere along the
California coast, fast-paced sea-level rise at the beginning of the Holocene shifted the shoreline eastward,
inundating river-valley floors and creating narrow bays (Inman 1983). As this marine transgression
slowed between 6000 and 3000 B.P., complex, low-energy environments began to develop in the
drowned river valleys: bays developed into lagoons, and estuaries and sandy beaches replaced rocky
shorelines (Nardin et al. 1981). Although sea level rose another 1- -- 2 m in the last 3,000 years, these
estuaries continued to aggrade, and some were completely infilled with sediment, becoming freshwater
alluvial environments. At the same time, extensive sandy beaches developed initially in the north and
eventually spread south to form the extensive Oceanside littoral cell (Inman 1983).
Although all the lagoons and estuaries of the San Diego coastline were characterized by this general
pattern, these are transient geological features that are extremely sensitive to localized, short-term
environmental change. Thus, detailed local reconstructions are needed to model the relationships between
environmental change and human adaptation. It is important to note that because different lagoons have
different histories, geoarchaeological coring and archaeological excavation data are important to
understanding these histories. Lagoon histories vary by size drainage systems, tectonic activity, effects of
sea level change, and formation of sand and cobble bars to form lagoons. There are, however, no high-
resolution records for individual estuaries in San Diego County. Shifts in local paleovegetation are
uncertain and differences in the developmental histories of estuaries are not well known. Substantial
paleoenvironmental research has been integrated with archaeological investigations at five lagoons------San
Mateo (Byrd et al. 1995; Reddy et al. 1996; Waters et al. 1999), Las Flores (Byrd 1996, 2003; Reddy
2005), Santa Margarita (Byrd 2005; Davis 2005), Batiquitos (Gallegos 1985, 1987), and San Elijo (Byrd
et al. 2004)------ all of which are located along the northern coast of San Diego County.
Batiquitos Lagoon, located in the middle of the San Diego coastline, formed more than 9,000 years ago
with the rise in sea level flooding the mouth of a river valley and closed about 3,500 years ago with the
stabilization of sea level and the formation of a cobble barrier bar across the mouth of the lagoon. From
about 8,000 years ago to the time of the lagoon’s closure, nearby archaeological sites produced large
amounts of primarily Chione sp. and Argopecten sp. To test contrasting hypotheses regarding the time of
this closure, Miller (1966) extracted a single core that provided a 6,500-year sedimentary sequence for
Batiquitos Lagoon. A series of radiocarbon dates on marine shell revealed a uniform rate of sedimentation
from about 6,400 to 4,000 years ago, but the rate increased dramatically about 3,000- -- 1,000 years ago.
Based on the presence or absence of shellfish and the estimated sea level at various depths of the core,
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Miller suggested that the lagoon was closed during the period of peak sedimentation in the Intermediate
period, between 3,000 and 1,000 years ago, but reopened at the end of that period. The closure of the
lagoon and the loss of habitat from about 3,500 to 1,500 years ago are indicated by the general absence of
adjacent archaeological sites radiocarbon-dated to this period. Of the 20 Late Holocene (Intermediate and
Late period) sites in this area, only 4 have produced dates between 3500 and 1500 B.P. (Gallegos 2002).
The reopening of Batiquitos Lagoon about 1,500 years ago is indicated by radiocarbon-dated sites
adjacent to the lagoon containing mudflat species of primarily Chione sp. and Ostrea sp. Late Holocene
sites in the Batiquitos Lagoon occasionally contain thick midden deposits, but most are best characterized
as special-function or limited-use processing and consumption locations, indicating that the lagoon
supported economically viable shellfish populations even during this period of presumed closure (Byrd
and Reddy 2002).
Foster’s (1993) pilot sediment-coring study in the San Elijo Lagoon, located just south of Batiquitos, also
provides support for Miller’s reconstruction at Batiquitos. The San Elijo study revealed a sequence of
estuary deposits up to 8,000 years ago. Sedimentation peaked about 4,000 years ago at San Elijo and
tapered off thereafter. Prior to the 1880s, San Elijo was once again a fully tidal estuary system. The
number of Late Holocene sites indicates much more extensive use of the San Diego coastline than
indicated by previous studies, a pattern well-demonstrated along the northern part of the San Diego
coastline. More recently, a series of detailed paleoenvironmental studies (including geomorphology,
palynology, and ostracode analyses) at various-sized drainage systems has provided a more-robust data set
with which to examine trans-Holocene environmental change in the San Diego region. Research in the
Las Flores estuary has yielded a well-dated and continuous sequence of Holocene deposits that extends
more than 9,000 years and has revealed the complex paleogeographic history of this drainage system
(Byrd 1996, 2003; Reddy 2005). Prior to 8,100 years ago, a freshwater lagoon existed that was buried by
a long and varied alluvial sequence separated by a series of buried paleosols. Reddy and Pope (2005)
refined the chronology of the infilling of the Las Flores estuary to 7000 B.P. By 4000 B.P., the lagoon
associated with this small drainage system had virtually shut down. Similar to Las Flores, the Ysidora
Basin (situated several kilometers upstream from the mouth of the Santa Margarita River) began to fill in
after 6700 B.P., and a brackish-water marsh developed by 6000 B.P. (Byrd 2005).
Paleoenvironmental data from San Elijo Lagoon, Santa Margarita drainage, and Las Flores lagoon all
indicated that the formation, infilling, and opening of these lagoons occurred in response to postglacial
marine transgressions and short-lived regressions. Rapid aggradation resulting in a shift to estuarine
sedimentation occurred around 10,250 B.P. in the Ysidora Basin, and the formation of a freshwater
lagoon occurred around 10,550 B.P. in the Las Flores drainage, at a time of marine regression. A
brackish- to marine-water open lagoon emerged between 9450 and 8650 B.P. at San Elijo Lagoon and
between 9850 and 9450 B.P. in the Ysidora Basin. A second transgression around 8350 B.P. produced
lagoons at San Elijo and Ysidora Basin. The dynamic nature of these lagoons was directly related to
marine transgressions and regressions, along with the sizes of the drainage catchment areas.
Archaeological sites with dated shellfish serve as crude proxies for environmental conditions, as different
shellfish species are associated with specific habitats. These data were used to argue that occupation of the
San Diego coastal area persisted throughout the Late Holocene and that prehistoric hunter-gatherers
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regularly exploited lagoon or rocky-shoreline shellfish in some localities and, in others, concentrated on
sandy-shoreline species (Byrd and Reddy 1999, 2002). Contrary to the Batiquitos reconstruction,
occupation along the northern San Diego coast appears to have peaked in the Late Holocene and
included major residential bases and numerous specialized sites (Byrd and Reddy 1999, 2002). Only two
of the 39 dated sites lacked Late Holocene components, whereas only 11 sites contained earlier
components. Of the Late Holocene dates, the vast majority dated to the Late period, after 1250 B.P.
(A.D. 700), and most of those dated to after 750 B.P. (A.D. 1200). Characteristics of the Late period
include increased site density, shorter distances between major residential sites, and greater numbers and
types of specialized, short-term occupations. Limited data from sites in the San Luis Rey, Buena Vista,
and Agua Hedionda drainages located between the Batiquitos and Las Flores drainages provide evidence
for major settlements and special-function and limited-use sites dating to after the decline of estuaries
4,000 years ago. Shell middens at these sites were dominated by lagoon species, such as Chione and
Argopecten, indicating that lagoons remained open and that coastal occupation and marine- or estuarine-
resource exploitation continued throughout the Late Holocene (Byrd 2003; Byrd and Reddy 2002;
Reddy 2004).
Other San Diego lagoons such as Los Peñasquitos and Tijuana lagoon and Mission/San Diego Bay also
have evidence of continuous occupation from 8,000- -- 10,000 years ago to historical-period contact.
Subsistence patterns, particularly the procurement of different species, varied considerably over time and
with location along the San Diego coastline. In the Camp Pendleton area, on the northern part of the
coast, local patterns focused on the most abundant nearby resources, and smaller and more labor-
intensive (in terms of collection and processing) shellfish became key elements by the Late period (Byrd
1996, 1998, 2003; Byrd and Reddy 1999, 2002; Reddy 2004). Quantities and varieties of shellfish
remains in middens along the northern coast varied significantly between drainages. The last 2,000 years
of occupation along the central coast of Camp Pendleton were characterized by the almost exclusive
exploitation of small Donax clams found on sandy beaches. By contrast, Protothaca, Tegula, and (to a
lesser degree) Mytilus prevailed in middens along the northern coast of Camp Pendleton. The continued
exploitation of Argopecten and Chione along the Santa Margarita River suggests the presence of a local
estuary in the Late Holocene, and the dominance of Argopecten and Ostrea at some sites indicates optimal
estuary conditions (York et al. 1999). Vertebrate exploitation during the Late Holocene was dominated
by small land mammals and nearshore fish and included lower frequencies of elasmobranch fish, birds,
and large land and marine mammals (Byrd and Reddy 2002; Wake 1999). Offshore fish were more
common at earlier sites, along with elasmobranch fish. The fish assemblages suggested a shift to open-
coast, sandy-beach species and a change in procurement strategies from fishing with hooks and lines to
the use of nets to capture surf and schooling fish.
Overall, early sites on the northern coast had a higher taxonomic diversity and a greater density of
vertebrate remains (Byrd and Reddy 2002; Wake 1999). This included greater numbers and diversity of
fish species and greater frequencies of ducks and other waterfowl. Invertebrates were dominated by
Chione and Argopecten, and Ostrea was most frequent in the earliest occupations. These taxa suggest that
early occupation focused on estuaries and their contact zones with the ocean and terrestrial habitats. Over
time, however, diet breadth increased toward greater reliance on smaller, lower-ranked resources, such as
fish, shellfish, birds, terrestrial mammals, and possibly plants. Shellfish remained important as harvesting
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strategies shifted toward smaller species that involved greater investment in labor. The dietary importance
of large mammals and birds decreased, and small mammals increasingly came to dominate the terrestrial
diet. Fish also decreased in diversity and, possibly, in dietary importance over time.
Considerable variability in resource procurement is also evident along other portions of the San Diego
coastline. For example, shellfish use was highly situational; where sufficient data are available, each
drainage and portion of the coastline appears to have had its own distinct history (Byrd and Reddy 2002;
Reddy 1999). Shellfish gathering, often of very different species, clearly persisted as a viable economic
strategy at many sites. Argopecten and Chione usually dominated shellfish assemblages, although the times
of their use varied widely. These two bay and lagoon species were present in the Buena Vista and Los
Peñasquitos Lagoons throughout much of the Holocene, in Mission/San Diego Bay and the San Elijo
Lagoon from 2,500 years ago to the modern era, and in Batiquitos Lagoon from 1,500 years ago (Byrd
and Reddy 2002). By contrast, the sandy-shore Donax was the predominant shellfish along the central
coast of Camp Pendleton, the San Luis Rey River, and Agua Hedionda after 2,000 years ago, although
lagoon species were also present in the last area. In addition, a shift to a greater use of rocky shore species
was documented along San Diego Bay (Byrd and Reddy 2002).
The exploitation of marine invertebrates was also highly variable and, like shellfish, reflected emphases on
different local habitats. For example, lagoon and open-water fish were emphasized at Buena Vista Lagoon,
nearshore fish at Agua Hedionda and Camp Pendleton, kelp beds and the open ocean habitat near
Mission Bay, and rocky and soft substrates along San Diego Bay. Noah (1988) argues that there is a long
tradition of fishing along the San Diego coast for more than 8,000 years. The more-maritime
adaptation------ involving an emphasis on marine mammals and pelagic fish------ that characterized the Santa
Barbara Channel area, however, was not common anywhere along the San Diego coastline.
HISTORY OF DREDGING IN MISSION BAY
Because of the proximity of Mission Bay and the large expanses of “made land” (artificial fill) to the
project area, especially along Grand Avenue, it is useful to review the history of dredging in Mission
Bay and where the dredged materials were placed. Mission Bay was a tidal marsh prior to dredging
that began in 1946 and continued to 1962 (Friends of Mission Bay Marshes n.d.). During its pre-
dredging history, it likely shifted between a lagoon, estuary, or tidal marsh due to natural shifts in the
San Diego River terminus between San Diego Bay and Mission Bay. It is interesting to note that the
European explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo named the area that is now Mission Bay “False Bay,
presumably because he and other explorers thought it was the entrance into San Diego Bay. Mission
Bay was one of two original natural outlets of the San Diego River, the other being San Diego Bay.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) constructed a levee in 1855 to divert the San Diego
River to discharge permanently into Mission Bay (then called False Bay) (Herron 1986; Wiegel 1994)
in order to prevent sediment from accumulating in San Diego Bay. This levee was rebuilt in 1875 and
again in 1885 after it was washed out by flooding (Wiegel 1994). The mouth of the San Diego River
is often closed by littoral drift during extreme rainfall and runoff events. A lowered weir was
constructed into the middle jetty to allow potential floodwaters to discharge through both the river
channel and the entrance to the bay (Griggs et al. 2005). The San Diego River, with a watershed of
about 435 square miles, is the major source of sand in Mission Bay (Minan 2004). Historically, the
San Diego River contributed an average of 71,900 cubic yards per year (yd3/yr) of sand to the bay,
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but dams built upstream on the river have reduced the sediment yield to 6,600 yd3/yr of sand (Willis
et al. 2002).
In all, 25 million cubic yards of sand and silt were dredged to create the land that forms the Mission
Bay Aquatic Park, a park that is almost entirely built from artificial fill (United States History n.d.).
The engineering history of dredging activity Mission Bay was recently reviewed by Ford (2011).
Sediment was dredged from the bottom of the bay by suction and then redeposited hydraulically.
During the last few decades, most material dredged from Mission Bay has been redeposited along the
Pacific Beach and Ocean Beach, but a significant amount has also been placed along Mission Beach
(Patsch and Griggs 2007). Maintenance dredging is required in the entrance channel to Mission Bay
because of the small tidal prism relative to the navigational depths required and the width of the
entrance channel (O’Brien 1931; Wiegel 1994). Similar fill deposits from historic and modern
construction activities have also been identified in large areas along the eastern part of San Diego Bay
and along the Interstate 5 corridor (Stroh 2012), and in other places around Mission Bay (Fordham
2008). Such fill deposits include compacted engineered, non-compacted non-engineered, and
hydraulic and mechanical non-engineered fill.
The review by Gabrielson (2004) is especially pertinent to the history of dredging and redeposition of
fill on and near the Mission Bay Golf course:
The City’s first dredging operation commenced early in 1946, and created the area then
known as Gleason Point, now Bahia Point. Between 1946 and 1956, the City completed
dredging in the West Bay, west of Ingraham Street, at the same time creating some new land
areas with dredged material. In addition, a narrow channel was dredged in the east bay to De
Anza Cove, the point of which was created by dredged material.
In 1956–57, the City Engineering and Planning Department prepared preliminary drawings of
a master plan for the area, showing that millions of yards of undesirable soils and
unsatisfactory materials would be disposed of in the ocean. Public hearings were held, and it
was evident from the vigorous public protest that disposal of the undesirable material at sea
would not be acceptable, so it was decided to add an island in the bay (Fiesta Island), and
make this a disposal area. The island would have, as margins, 200-foot-wide sand levees, and
would be covered with a minimum of three feet of sand. After the hearings and the addition
of Fiesta Island in 1958, the author, Ed Gabrielson, and his staff, proceeded to prepare the
contract drawings for the completion of dredging of Mission Bay and the creation of
subsequent infrastructure.
The original material that had been pumped onto De Anza Point was mucky silt, which would
not hold up equipment of any type. Although this material set for approximately three years,
it never gave up its water content, and nothing could be built on it. As a remedial action, it
was decided to pump good sand over this area, three feet deep. After a few months, tests
showed the area to be fairly stable. Shortly thereafter, contracts were let for sewers, water
mains, and a trailer court. Trouble had been expected in the construction of sewer mains, but,
fortunately, the work went very well, and construction was completed. Later on, the lessee
desired some higher ground on the undeveloped portion. In 1963–64, the lessee, with
permission of the City, let a contract for additional dredging to place another three feet of fill
on the remaining portion. The sand was pumped by dredging from the west side of Fiesta
Island.
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Upon completion of the Federal work, the City decided to advertise for bids for completion of
all remaining dredging and creation of all needed land areas. The first contract drawing
directed the contractor to complete the bay dredging to a depth of minus eight feet mean
lower low water, to cover all proposed beach areas with three feet of sand and to provide at
least three feet of sand to underfoot at a water depth of minus six feet mean lower low water.
It also directed the preparation of a disposal area for the undesirable fine silts. This disposal
area became Fiesta Island.
This paper by Gabrielson (2004) clearly indicates that DeAnza Point, which is immediately south of
the Mission Bay Golf Course, was built from artificial fill. It also notes the problems for developing
this area that were caused by the high water content, texture, and organic matter of the mucky silt.
These problems were solved by waiting for three years, then placing 3 feet of sand over the mucky
silt and then another 3 feet of sand in 1963–64. Construction of the Mission Bay Golf Course, which
opened in May 27, 1955, on the fill deposits in the 46-acre parcel north of DeAnza Point is an
appropriate recreational use of the property, given that it cannot be developed for housing.
BACKGROUND ON BURIED SITE MODELING
Preservation and visibility of the archaeological record is principally a function of earth surface
processes and therefore, inherently biased (Waters 1992; Waters and Kuehn 1996; Schiffer 1983).
Because of cycles of erosion and deposition over the last 15,000 years, older archaeological deposits
are significantly underrepresented at the modern surface (Byrd and O’Neill 2002; Homburg et al.
2014; Meyer and Rosenthal 2008; Pope 2005; Rosenthal and Meyer 2004; Waters et al. 1999a;
Windingstad and Reddy 2012). Regionally, a number of buried prehistoric archaeological sites have
been documented in coastal wetlands and riverine settings (Homburg 2014, Pope 2005, Waters 1999).
Eustatic sea-level rise since the last glacial maximum (24,000–18,000 years ago), coastal bluff
erosion, tectonic uplift, and alluvial sedimentation along coastal streams have dramatically affected
the landscape since humans first arrived on the southern California coast (approximately 13,000–
15,000 years ago). These processes strongly influenced human settlement and subsistence patterns in
the past and they largely determine how and where evidence of past human occupation is preserved
today.
All buried site sensitivity models are based on the relationship between landform-age and the age of
human settlement in North America. Put simply, buried archaeological resources are not possible
below landforms that developed prior to the colonization of the continent, which, based on our
present understanding, occurred sometime in the latest Pleistocene. Using this concept as a
methodological framework, the first step in modeling buried site potential is to delineate late
Pleistocene or older landforms from those that aggraded coeval with human habitation (Latest
Pleistocene to the present). Landform age can be evaluated by analyzing geologic and soil maps (the
approach taken in this study), aerial and satellite imagery, and correlation of local landforms/soils
with regional geomorphic and geochronological studies. More robust models include field
verification via subsurface testing, such as coring as on this project and/or trenching, and by dating
stratigraphic sequences using radiocarbon and other dating methods.
Although all terrestrial landforms that aggraded since the latest Pleistocene have at least some
potential for buried archaeology, the probability for a buried site is related to more than just landform
age (Meyer et al. 2010). Buried site models based exclusively on geologic potential will likely
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overestimate potential in some areas and underestimate it in others. To compensate for this, some
sensitivity models incorporate a subset of environmental variables that are known to influence
prehistoric settlement location. These variables generally include slope gradient, slope aspect,
elevation, proximity to water sources, and distance to stream confluences (Hansen et al. 2004; Meyer
2010; Windingstad and Homburg 2016). Even with these variables included, however, there are
several caveats to consider.
When soil surveys are used as the model foundation, it is important to recognize that unlike many
geologic units, soil boundaries rarely have abrupt contacts; rather, soils usually grade from one type
to another over relatively long distances. As defined in soil taxonomy, a soil mapping unit (soil
series) may include up to 10 percent of a contrasting soil type or up to 50 percent if the inclusion is
similar to the primary mapping unit (Soil Survey Staff 1975). Consequently, most mapped soil series
include other soil types, including soils significantly different from the mapped unit. It is also
important to note that the minimum size delineated on county soil maps ranges from one to four
hectares (1 hectare equals 10,000 square meters) (Soil Survey Staff 1993). Many archaeological sites
are significantly smaller than this (Holliday 2004). Furthermore, the soil and geologic maps that are
available from state and federal agencies are not produced with the archaeologist in mind. Rather,
archaeologists must adapt these maps for their own purposes with the knowledge that the temporal
and spatial scales used by earth scientists will result in some uncertainty at the scale of most
archaeological studies (Holliday 2004).
Buried site sensitivity models provide a valuable tool for cultural resources management projects by
identifying areas where buried archaeology is likely or possible to be encountered before ground
disturbance is initiated. This not only helps avoid potentially destroying important buried
archaeological deposits but also prevents costly downtime and delays during the construction process.
Buried sites represent a critical archaeological resource because, in many cases, overlying
sedimentation can effectively protect them from the disturbance processes that operate at or near the
surface. Bioturbation by burrowing rodents in particular can destroy the stratigraphic integrity and
thus undermine research potential for many surficial sites in California (Bocek 1992; Erlandson
1984).
Buried archaeological sites have been identified in coastal lagoon and floodplain settings of the San
Diego County coast along Las Flores and San Mateo Creeks on Camp Pendleton (Byrd 1996; Waters
et al. 1999b), the Otay River floodplain near San Diego Bay (Pope 2003), and the margin of San Elijo
Lagoon (Pope 2004, Smith 1986). Although initially recorded as a Late Prehistoric shell midden,
extensive coring at CA-SDI-811 on the floodplain of Las Flores Creek identified three buried
occupational levels at 2 m, 3 m, and 5 m below surface. These buried occupations were dated to 1700,
3300, and 5600 B.C. respectively. Below the T-2 Holocene terrace along San Mateo Creek, Reddy et
al. (1996) and Waters et al. (1999b) dated buried hearths and cultural marine shell at Sites CA-SDI-
13324, CA-SDI-13325, and CA-SDI-8435. These sites were found within 1–2 m of the modern
surface dated from 1310 to 3720 BP. The dated stratigraphic sequences along San Mateo and Las
Flores Creeks suggest that archaeological sites older than 4000 BP will be deeply buried and will not
be visible on the modern surface. Finally, a buried sequence of stratified cultural deposits was
discovered near San Diego Bay on the lower Otay River at 1 m, 3 m, and 5 m below surface and
dated to A.D. 1600, A.D. 1400, and 3300 B.C., respectively. As with CA-SDI-811, coring there
centered on a previously identified late prehistoric site with a surface expression.
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Lagoon and valley margins also provide important contexts for buried archaeological sites. Alluvial
slope wash deposits originating from Pleistocene marine terraces and Tertiary bedrock hills can bury
sites that were originally associated with higher ground along lagoon edges. At San Elijo Lagoon,
buried archaeological deposits at Site CA-SDI-10220 were identified down to 4 m below surface and
dated to 1300–2400 B.C. (Smith 1986; Pope 2004, 2005). Cultural materials were identified within a
thick colluvial/alluvial mantle originating from small tributary drainages along the edge of the lagoon.
North of the San Diego coast along the edges of Ballona Lagoon, late Prehistoric archaeological
resources at CA-LAN-47 and CA-LAN-211/H were recovered in alluvial fan and alluvial plain
deposits to depths of about 1 m (Altschul et al. 1992, 2003).
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METHODS
Prior to fieldwork, background research was conducted to compile information on the soils and
geology of the project area. LSA collected a series of soil samples, and the City completed
geotechnical testing (Allied Geotechnical Engineers [AGE]) cores along the proposed project
alignment. These are labeled as “LSA” cores versus “Bore” locations on Figure 9. Core samples were
collected on September 6 through 8, 2016. Dr. Homburg was present when core samples were
collected from the project area for the first two days of fieldwork. A hydraulic drilling rig was used to
extract 1⅛-inch-wide cores (Figure 10). In all, ten cores were collected along portions of Grand
Avenue, Figueroa Street, and Mission Bay Drive. Cores were taken in 4-foot sections to depths
ranging between 20 and 24 ft. Each section was cut in the field to size for each acrylic sleeve. Core
LSA-1 was abandoned at 19 ft, with refusal caused by gravel. Overall, however, sediment recovery
was good in the cores, with 79.3 percent recovered.
The 4-foot core sections were transported to LSA’s lab in Carlsbad. LSA staff cut each acrylic sleeve
lengthwise in order to remove one side of the sleeve in preparation for core descriptions. Dr.
Homburg described the cores between September 8 and 15, 2016, with assistance from a Native
American monitor (Annette Osuna or Kevin Osuna) each day. Core descriptions followed standard
soil survey methods as outlined in Schoenberger et al. (2002) and Soil Survey Division Staff (1993).
Sediment properties recorded focused on ones most informative on stratigraphic integrity and buried
site potential. Soil descriptions for each core included the following: master horizon/stratigraphic
depths, Munsell color (moist), textural estimates by the ribbon method for representative strata, gravel
content, redoximorphic features, and inclusions of shell and or other materials that may indicate
cultural activity. In an attempt to possibly recover cultural material, selected strata were water-
screened through 1/16-inch mesh to search for materials such as lithic or ceramic artifacts, faunal bone,
ecofacts, charcoal, and any other possible indications of human activity.
SOURCE : USDA (2016)
I:\RKE160 1\GIS\ProjAr ea_Core Loc.mxd (10/24 /2016)
FIGURE 9
Project Location and Soil Core Test Locations
LEGEND
Soil Core Location
!.Geotechnic al Bore
!.LSA
Water Main New Alignment (Job 955)
Sewer M ain Replace -in-Place (J ob 786)
Sewer M ain New Alignment (Job 786)
Recorded Site Boun dary of CA-SDI-5017
0 300 600
FEET
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
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Figure 10: Photograph of Pacific Drilling Rig Used for Sample Collection
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REPORT OF FINDINGS
To avoid traffic and underground utilities, it was necessary to set up the drilling rig on the median of
Grand Avenue and Mission Bay Drive, but most cores were placed either on the edge of a main road
or side street, or easements between sidewalks and streets in front yards. Figures 11 through 13 show
the drilling rig operation in the field LSA-2, LSA-4, and LSA-8, respectively.
Figure 11: Photograph of Drill Operation, Mission Bay Drive at LSA-2, Facing Northwest
Figure 12: Photograph of Drill Rig at LSA-4, Facing West
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Figure 13: Photograph of Drill Rig at LSA-8, Facing North-northwest
Core Stratigraphy
Detailed descriptions for all cores are provided in Appendix B. Photographs of each segment for all
LSA cores are presented in Figures 14 through 16, and Figure 17 shows a schematic drawing of the
pedostratigraphy for each core, arranged by elevation. In all, recovered core segments totaled 50.73
m. (Note: that number excludes the unrecovered core segments, which totaled 12.6 m.) Each core was
collected from depths that slightly exceeded the bottom of the vertical project area. From top to
bottom, the major pedostratigraphic units included the following:
(1) Fill (total length of 3.42 m, or 5.5% of the recovered core segments);
(2) A horizon (total length of 8.12 m, or 13.1% of the recovered core segments);
(3) B horizon (total length of 5.28 m, or 8.5% of the recovered core segments); and
(4) C horizon (total length of 32.69 m, or 52.6% of the recovered core segments).
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Figure 14: Photograph of LSA-1, LSA-2, and LSA-3 Core Samples
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Figure 15: Photograph of LSA-4, LSA-5, LSA-6, and LSA-7 Core Samples
Possible Burned Soil
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Figure 16: Photograph of LSA-8, LSA-9, and LSA-10 Core Samples
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Figure 17: Schematic Drawing of the Pedostratigraphy for the LSA Cores
Possible
Thermally
Modified
Soil
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Fill deposits were found in five of the cores (LSA-1, LSA-3, LSA-4, LSA-7, and LSA-10). It is
significant that fill was not found in all cores, thus confirming the boundary of made land (artificial
fill) shown in the soil map as being confined to the south of Grand Avenue on the property of the
Mission Bay Golf Course. (See Homburg et al. 2014 for more information on the fill covering the
golf course.)
The A horizon, the surface horizon (or topsoil) tended to be darker in color, commonly brown to dark
brown, due to its higher organic matter content compared to other soil horizons. An A horizon was
found in all but one core, LSA-7, presumably because it had been scraped off by grading or other
earthmoving activities during historic-period road construction. The A horizon is the most likely layer
to contain cultural material. Midden deposits found by previous cultural resources investigations at
Site CA-SDI-5017 tend to be within 1 to 1.5 m of the surface, mostly associated with the A horizon.
A maximum midden depth of 1 to 2.5 m was found by Zepeda-Herman (2005). Lindvall and
Rockwell (1995) found cultural material associated with a buried A horizon at the top of their Unit D
that was dated at about 9300 B.P.; however, the depth of that find is unknown because their trenching
took place on a parking lot that had previously been graded. The A horizon was thicker but more
weakly developed in the alluvium of Rose Creek (Corralitos loamy sand) compared to the Antioch
series (soil map units HuC and HuE, formerly known as the Huerhuera series). Transitional AC
horizons were also common in core samples from the recent alluvium of Rose Creek.
B horizons, which were typically dark yellowish brown, were documented in six of the ten cores:
LSA-2, LSA-3, LSA-4, LSA-5, LSA-8, and LSA-10. B horizons in the project area have natric
horizons, a type of argillic horizon (a subsurface horizon with an accumulation of translocated clay)
that has a prismatic structure with rounded caps caused by sodium. Because of how wet the core
samples were, it was usually impossible to see clay films, but the yellower color and higher clay
content usually permitted it to be distinguished from the overlying A horizon. B horizons mark
locations that have the greatest landscape stability. Consequently, they are the oldest developed soils
in the project area. It is significant that the age of an argillic B horizon documented by Lindvall and
Rockwell (1995) just outside of the northeast boundary of Site CA-SDI-5017 was estimated at about
9,000 years old based on radiocarbon dating.
C horizons account for over half of all core lengths. They consist of sediment that has little or no
pedogenic development. Artifacts can be found in C horizon material, but they are less likely because
C horizons represent alluvial/estuarine sediment that was either deposited too rapidly for soil
development to occur or that was too poorly drained (often waterlogged) to permit soil formation.
Consequently, only artifacts left from ephemeral of human activities (e.g., collection of food
resources like shellfish or plants during brief intervals in the past when it was better drained).
No artifacts or midden deposits (that is, archaeological trash deposits characterized by a dark soil
color due to high organic matter additions and that have a high artifact density) were found in any of
the LSA cores or AGE bore samples. All ten LSA cores were located outside of midden deposits
identified by previous studies, but LSA-10 was placed just outside of that midden. AGE bore holes B-
5 and B-6 were within the midden boundary recorded by Bissell (1992), but an examination of those
samples at the AGE lab did not identify any archaeological materials.
Oxidized sediments were discovered in LSA-5 (refer again to Figure 9) next to Grand Avenue at a
shallow depth of 19–26 cm below asphalt. It is characterized by a reddish color (7.5YR 4/6 moist
Munsell color) that is strongly contrasted with the very dark grayish brown (10YR 3/2 moist) color of
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the underlying and overlying A horizon matrix (Figure 18). Charcoal stains were noted below the
oxidized color of and several pieces of possible FAR were found in the oxidized matrix. The matrix
was screened with 1/16-inch hardware cloth, but no artifacts were recovered in this small sample.
Archaeological examination during construction is recommended to determine the context.
Figure 18: Close-up Photograph of Oxidized Zone in LSA-5 at 19 to 28 cm Below Surface
(3.47-3.38 m MSL) (19 cm is at left and 28 cm on right)
Buried Site Model
The geologic map does not differentiate Holocene from late Pleistocene deposits, so it not helpful for
predicting where and how deep archaeological sites may be found. Landform age was determined by
analyzing the 1:24,000 soil survey maps. Soil geomorphic relationships, soil genesis, and
physiographic setting are not emphasized and, as a consequence, a poor correlation often exists
between geologic maps and soil surveys (Holliday 2004; Simonson 1997). The type of soil that
develops in a sedimentary or residual deposit is dictated by the major soil-forming factors: climate,
organisms, relief, parent material, and time (Jenny 1941). The combination of these five factors at a
given location influences the rate and intensity of the four soil-forming processes: additions (organic
matter/biomass and atmospheric dust), losses (leaching, erosion, and decomposition of organic
matter), transformations (physical and chemical weathering of parent material), and translocations
(general down-profile movement of soil particles, weathering products, and organic matter)
(Simonson 1959).
Taxonomic classification for each soil series provided information on relative soil age and the factors
of soil formation. Soils are powerful predictors of age because soil development is time-dependent
(Birkeland 1999; Holliday 2004; Jenny 1941). Older landforms have more strongly developed soils
(if not severely eroded) with diagnostic subsurface horizons (B horizons). By contrast, younger
landforms have weakly developed soils with simple A to C horizonation and no B horizon.
Diagnostic subsurface soil horizons supplied key data for assessing buried-site potential. Soils with a
cambic (a diagnostic subsurface horizon with minimal soil structure and/or a color change from the
parent material) horizon and ones that completely lack a B horizon are younger and less well
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developed, so they have greater potential for containing buried cultural deposits, especially when
associated with alluvial deposition.
Each soil map unit in the project area was classified as having a high, medium, or low probability for
containing buried archaeological sites (previously referenced Table C). The Rose Creek alluvium of
the Corralitas series, and Entisol (A to C horizonation only) has the highest probability for containing
buried archaeological sites, but the sites there are likely to have lower artifact densities than that of
older, more stable landforms, such as the northwest part of Site CA-SDI-5017 where Rogers (n.d.)
first documented the site. Both the Antioch (formerly Huerhuero) and Olivenhain series (both
Alfisols) have argillic horizons estimated at about 9000 years old based on research by Lindvall and
Rockwell (1995).
Alfisols in the project area are on Pleistocene to early Holocene alluvial terrace along Rose Creek.
Muh’s (1982) research on the San Clemente Island marine terrace soils found that some Alfisols in
xeric coastal environments are over 200,000 years old, but that is clearly much older than the Alfisols
in the project area. Tidal flats have a low probability of buried sites, and made land has no
probability.
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CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Overall, this study showed coring to be effective for examining, documenting, and interpreting the
vertical distribution of natural and possible cultural deposits. Coring is cost-effective, relatively non-
destructive, and it provides archaeologists and geoscientists with important archaeological and
stratigraphic information that would be too costly to obtain by other methods (Stein 1986;
Schuldenrein 1991). Coring is less effective at documenting the horizontal distribution and variability
of cultural deposits, however, so caution must therefore be taken with such a limited sample when the
researcher has such a narrow view of the subsurface in a 1⅛-inch core.
Even though no midden deposits associated with Site CA-SDI-5017 were found by this
geoarchaeological assessment, there are still landforms and soils in the project area that have a
medium to high potential for buried intact archaeological sites. These include the stream and fan
alluvium of Rose Creek and the colluvial deposits along the margin of the lower-lying alluvial areas.
Buried archaeological deposits have been found in similar settings both locally and regionally (e.g.,
San Elijo Lagoon, Ballona Lagoon, San Mateo Creek, Las Flores Creek, and the Otay River).
Because of the archaeological significance of Site CA-SDI-5017, combined with its importance as a
cultural heritage resource for Native Americans, we recommend that all earthmoving activities
involved in excavation within native (natural) deposits for constructing the proposed sewage and
water lines, especially near previously identified midden areas, be closely monitored by an
archaeologist (Figure 19). We also recommend that once the road is removed for construction of the
portion of Job 786 associated with LSA-5 (refer again to Figure 9), archaeologists examine the
natural surface below the road to determine if the thermally modified soil previously identified is
recent disturbance below the road base.
SOURCE : USDA (2016)
I:\RKE160 1\GIS\ProjAr ea_Mid denLoc_ BoreLoc .mxd ( 10/24/20 16)
FIGURE 19
Project Location and Intact Midden Locations
LEGEND
!.Geotechnic al Bore
!.LSA Soil Core
Site Bou ndary of CA-SD I-5017
Water New Alignmen t (Job 955)
Sewer R eplace-in-Place (Job 78 6)
Sewer N ew Align ment (Job 786)
Sewer Group 786 and Sewer & Water Group 955
Geoarchaeological Testing and Evaluation
RKE1601
Geologic Map Units
Qop6: Old Parali c de posit s
Qyc: Young colluv ial depos its
Af: Artifi cial Fill
0 500 1000
FEET
Previously Recorded Intact Midden Deposits
#
*Bissell 1992
#
*Gallegos and Assoc 199 7
#
*Chace 1979
#
*Garcia-Her bst 2008
#
*Huett 1979
#
*Rogers 1929
#
*Winterrowd and Ca rdenas 19 87
#
*Zepeda-Her man 2005
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APPENDIX A
SOILS SERIES DESCRIPTIONS
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APPENDIX A:
USDA-NRCS Official Soil Series Descriptions for the 786/955
Project and Surrounding Area.
(Soil pedon descriptions obtained from https://soilseries.sc.egov.usda.gov/osdname.asp; website
accessed on September 28, 2016)
ANTIOCH SERIES
LOCATION: ANTIOCH, CA
Established Series
Rev. LAB-GMK-LCL
3/97
Note: Soils of the Huerhuero series are now included with the Antioch series, so the name Huerhuero
is now obsolete.
The Antioch series have light brownish gray and brown, medium acid, loam Ap and Al horizons, light
gray A2 horizons, light yellowish brown yellowish brown, medium acid and moderately alkaline clay
and clay loam B2t horizons.
TAXONOMIC CLASS: Fine, smectitic, thermic Typic Natrixeralfs
TYPICAL PEDON: Antioch loam - plowed field (Colors are for dry soil unless otherwise noted.)
Ap--0 to 5 inches; light brownish gray (10YR 6/2) loam, dark grayish brown (10YR 4/2) moist;
common fine yellowish brown (10YR 5/6) mottles, strong brown (7.5YR 5/6) moist; massive; hard,
friable, slightly sticky, slightly plastic; many very fine roots; many very fine roots; many very fine
and medium tubular pores; medium acid (pH 5.6); clear smooth boundary. (5 to 10 inches thick)
A1--5 to 14 inches; brown (10YR 5/3) loam, dark brown (10YR 3/3) moist; few fine yellowish brown
(10YR 5/6) mottles, strong brown (7.5YR 5/6) moist massive; hard, friable, slightly sticky, slightly
plastic; few very fine roots; many fine and medium acid (pH 6.0); clear wavy boundary. (8 to 15
inches thick)
A2--14 to 19 inches; light gray (10YR 7/2) loam, dark grayish brown (10YR 4/2) moist; common fine
yellowish sticky, slightly sticky; slightly plastic; few very fine roots; many fine pores; Mn stains;
slightly acid (pH 6.5); abrupt smooth boundary. (1/4 to 5 inches thick)
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Bt1--19 to 34 inches; light yellowish brown (10YR 6/4) clay, dark yellowish brown (10YR 3/3)
moist; moderate very coarse prismatic structure; extremely hard, very firm, sticky, very plastic; few
very fine roots; common very fine tubular pores; many moderately thick clay films on faces of peds
and lining pores; few dark stains; medium acid (pH 6.0); clear wavy boundary. (9 to 16 inches thick)
Bt2--34 to 37 inches; yellowish brown (10YR 5/4) heavy clay loam, dark brown (10YR 4/3) moist;
weak medium angular blocky structure; extremely hard, very firm, sticky, plastic; common very fine
tubular pores; many moderately thick clay films on faces of peds and lining pores; many dark stains;
moderately alkaline (pH 8.0); clear wavy boundary. (8 to 14 inches thick)
Bt3--37 to 46 inches; pale brown (10YR 6/3) clay loam, dark yellowish brown (10YR 4/4) moist,
dark brown (7.5YR 3/2) and dark grayish brown (2.5Y 4/2) ped faces moist; weak medium angular
blocky structure; hard, firm, sticky, plastic; common very fine tubular pores; continuous moderately
thick clay films on faces of peds and lining pores; common dark stains; moderately alkaline (ph 8.0);
diffuse boundary. (0 to 10 inches thick)
Bt4--46 to 60 inches; pale brown (10YR 6/3) silty clay loam, olive brown (2.5Y 4/2) and dusky red
(2.5YR 3/2) faces of peds moist; weak medium angular blocky structure; hard, firm, sticky, plastic;
common very fine tubular pores; continuous moderately thick clay films on faces of peds and lining
pores; common dark stains; moderately alkaline (ph 8.0); clear wavy boundary. (0 to 14 inches thick)
C1--60 to 76 inches; pale brown (10YR 6/3) loam, dark yellowish brown (10YR 4/4) moist; weak
medium angular blocky structure; slightly hard, friable, slightly sticky, plastic; many very fine tubular
pores; common thin clay films on faces of peds and lining pores; common dark stains; moderately
alkaline (pH 8.0); clear wavy boundary. (10 to 20 inches thick)
C2--76 to 81 inches; Dark yellowish brown (10YR 4/4) moist fine sandy loam; weak medium angular
blocky structure; slightly hard, friable, many very fine tubular pores; few thin clay films on faces of
peds and lining pores; moderately alkaline (ph 8.0); common Fe and Mn stains.
TYPE LOCATION: Solano County, California; 1 1/2 miles east of Suisun City; SW1/4 SE1/4
SW1/4 sec. 29, T. 5 N., R. 1 W., MDB&M 38 degrees North latitude 14 minutes, 40 seconds, 122
degrees West longitude 00 minutes, 5 seconds.
RANGE IN CHARACTERISTICS: The mean annual soil temperature 59 to 64 F. The soils
become moist in some or all parts between depths of 4 to 12 inches about late November and usually
remain moist all the time until late May or early June. The soils remain dry all rest of the time. Few
pebbles are present throughout the some pedons. Coarse and very coarse sand is less than 5 percent.
The A1 horizon is dark grayish brown, dark brown, brown, grayish brown, or light brownish gray. It
contains more than 1 percent organic matter in the upper 10 inches, but is hard and massive when dry.
This horizon is neutral to strongly acid, though neutral saturation in some pedons.
The A2 horizon is gray, light brownish, light brownish gray or light gray and is slightly to strongly
acid. The A2-Bt horizon boundary is abrupt or very abrupt. The Bt horizon is dark brown, yellowish
brown, light yellowish brown and pale brown 10YR hue and light olive brown and light yellowish
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brown in 2.5Y hue. It is medium acid to moderately alkaline, becoming more alkaline with increasing
depth. All of the Bt horizon has more than 15 percent exchangeable sodium. It is clay or heavy clay
loam and has approximately 35 to 45 percent clay. It has weak or moderate columnar moderate to
strong prismatic structure in the upper part. Usually there are transitional horizons to the C horizon.
The lower Bt horizons or B3 or C horizons are calcareous in some or all parts.
The C horizon is pale brown, light yellowish brown, yellowish brown or dark yellowish brown, it is
somewhat stratified and is usually clay loam or loam in texture. This horizon is mildly or moderately
alkaline.
COMPETING SERIES: These are the Bonsall, Las Flores, Lethent, Milipitas, Placentia, Riz, San
Miguel, Solano, Stockpen, Tierra, and Waukena series. Bonsall and Stockpen soils lack an albic
horizon. Las Flores, Milipitas, and Tierra soils lack natric horizons. Lethent soils have an aridic
moisture regime. Placentia soils have about 15 to 20 percent coarse and very coarse sand in the B2t
horizon. Riz soils lack an abrupt A-B horizon boundary with more than 15 percent absolute clay
difference. San Miguel soils have a lithic contact at depth of 20 to 34 inches. Solano and Waukena
soils have less than 35 percent clay in the natric horizon.
GEOGRAPHIC SETTING: Antioch soils are on nearly level to strongly sloping alluvial fans and
terraces at elevations of less than 1,100 feet. Slopes are usually less than 3 percent. The climate is
subhumid mesothermal with warm to hot dry summers and cool moist winter. Mean annual
precipitation is 12 to 20 inches. Average January temperature is about 46 F, average July temperature
about 68 F, mean annual temperature about 58 F, and the freeze-free season ia about 260 days.
GEOGRAPHICALLY ASSOCIATED SOILS: These are the Altamont, Los Osos, Pleasanton,
Rincon, and San Ysidro soils and the competing Solano soils. Altamont soils are of fine texture
throughout and have cracks. Los Osos soils have mollic epipedons. Pleasanton, Rincon, and San
Ysidro soils lack natric horizons.
DRAINAGE AND PERMEABILITY: Moderately well to somewhat poorly drained; slow to
medium runoff; very slow permeability.
USE OF VEGETATION: Used for production of annual pasture, dryfarmed grain and some
irrigated row crops. Vegetation in untilled areas is annual grasses, forbs and weeds with scattered
oaks.
DISTRIBUTION AND EXTENT: Along the central and southern Coast Range valleys in
California. They are of moderate extent in MLRA 14 and 17.
MLRA SOIL SURVEY REGIONAL OFFICE (MO) RESPONSIBLE: Davis, California
SERIES ESTABLISHED: Reconnaissance of Sacramento Valley, California, 1913.
REMARKS: The soils were formerly classified in the solodized-Solonetz group. Soils of the
Huerhuero series are now included with the Antioch series.
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Last revised by the state on 5/72.
ADDITIONAL DATA: NSSL pedon S64CA-095-008 (type location) and S78CA-000-000 (range in
characteristics).
CORRALITOS SERIES
LOCATION: CORRALITOS, CA
Established Series
Rev. GWH-RCH-TDC
4/93
The Corralitos series consists of deep, somewhat excessively drained soils that formed in recent sandy
alluvium derived from acid sandstone and related rocks. Corralitos soils are on alluvial fans and in
small valleys and have slopes of 0 to 15 percent. The mean annual precipitation is about 20 inches
and mean annual air temperature is about 58 degrees F.
TAXONOMIC CLASS: Mixed, thermic Typic Xeropsamments
TYPICAL PEDON: Corralitos loamy sand - rangeland. (Colors are for dry soil unless otherwise
noted).
A11--0 to 8 inches; brown (10YR 5/3) loamy sand, dark brown (10YR 4/3) moist; single grained;
loose; many very fine, common fine and few medium and coarse roots; many very fine and fine
interstitial pores; medium acid (pH 6.0); abrupt wavy boundary. (3 to 10 inches thick)
A12--8 to 20 inches; grayish brown (10YR 5/2) loamy sand, dark grayish brown (10YR 4/2) moist;
massive; slightly hard, very friable, nonsticky and nonplastic; common very fine and fine roots, and
few medium and coarse roots; many very fine and fine interstitial pores and many very fine, fine, and
medium tubular pores; medium acid (pH 6.0); gradual irregular boundary. (6 to 13 inches thick)
A13--20 to 32 inches; grayish brown (10YR 5/2) loamy sand, dark brown (10YR 4/3) moist; massive;
soft, very friable, nonsticky and nonplastic; few very fine, fine, medium, and coarse roots; many very
fine and fine interstitial and many fine and common medium tubular pores; medium acid (pH 6.0);
gradual irregular boundary. (7 to 12 inches thick)
C1--32 to 49 inches; light brownish bray (10YR 6/2) light loamy sand, dark yellowish brown (10YR
4/4) moist; massive; soft, very friable, nonsticky and nonplastic; few very fine, fine, medium, and
coarse roots; many very fine and fine interstitial pores and many very fine, fine, and medium tubular
pores; medium acid (pH 6.0); abrupt wavy boundary. (10 to 18 inches thick)
C2---49 to 72 inches; pale brown (10YR 6/3) loamy sand, yellowish brown (10YR 5/4) moist;
massive; soft, very friable, nonsticky and nonplastic; few very fine and fine and few medium roots;
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many very fine and fine interstitial and few very fine and fine tubular pores; medium acid (pH 6.0).
(10 to 14 inches thick
TYPE LOCATION: Santa Barbara, California; 3 1/4 miles east along the north edge of San Antonio
Valley from the Lompos-Casmalia road intersection and 1.8 miles north on side road, east of road
fork.
RANGE IN CHARACTERISTICS: The mean annual soil temperature is about 60 to 65 degrees F
and the soil temperature usually is not below 47 degrees F at any time. The mean winter soil
temperature is about 54 to 58 degrees F and the mean summer soil temperature is about 65 to 70
degrees F. The soil between depths of about 12 and 35 inches is usually dry all of the time from late
April or May until November or early December and is moist in some or all parts all the rest of the
year.
Rock fragments are mostly of gravel size and make up less than 15 percent of the soil and in most
pedons less than 5 percent of soil. Textures are sand, loamy sand, fine sand or loamy fine sand to a
depth of 40 inches or more. Dominant sand sizes are medium and fine sand. Coarse and very coarse
sand combined is less than 35 percent. The profile is stratified, but strata finer than loamy fine sand
are lacking to a depth of more than 40 inches. The soil is dominantly slightly to strongly acid but
some strata in some pedons are neutral.
The A horizon is brown to pale brown (10YR 5/3, 5/2, 6/2, 6/3). Organic matter is less than 1 percent
in most parts.
The C horizon is light gray to light yellowish brown (10YR 7/2, 7/1, 7/3, 6/2, 6/3, 6/4). Weakly
expressed buried A horizons are present in a few pedons. Buried horizons of contrasting texture and
color are present below a depth of 40 inches in some pedons.
COMPETING SERIES: These are the Arnold, Briones, Calhi, Delhi and Tujunga series in the same
family and the Baywood and Oceano series. Arnold soils have a paralithic contact 40 to 60 inches
below the surface and lack stratification. (See Remarks). Baywood soils have a mollic epipedon.
Briones soils have a paralithic contact 20 to 40 inches below the surface. Calhi soils are moderately to
very strongly alkaline below a depth of 10 inches. Delhi soils lack rock fragments and stratification,
and the mean summer and mean winter soil temperatures differ by about 25 to 35 degrees F. Oceano
soils have lamellae and lack stratification. Tujunga soils have more than 35 percent coarse and very
coarse sand and mean summer and mean winter soil temperatures differ by more than 15 degrees F.
Also, Tujunga soils are slightly acid to mildly alkaline and have 5 to 35 percent rock fragments.
GEOGRAPHIC SETTING: The Corralitos soils are on alluvial fans and in small valleys at
elevations of 25 to 1,000 feet. Slopes are 0 to 15 percent. The soils formed in recent sandy alluvium
derived from acid sandstone and related sources. The climate is dry subhumid mesothermal with dry
somewhat foggy summers and cool moist winters. Mean annual precipitation is 12 to 30 inches.
Average January temperature is 50 to 52 degrees F, average July temperature is 62 to 66 F, and mean
annual temperature is 57 to 60 degrees F. The frost-free season is 250 to 330 days.
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GEOGRAPHICALLY ASSOCIATED SOILS: These are the Antioch, Cortina, Elder, Las Flores,
Metz and Pico soils and the competing Arnold soils. Antioch and Las Flores soils have a fine textured
argillic horizon. Cortina soils are loamy and have more than 35 percent rock fragments. Elder and
Pico soils are sandy loam and have a mollic epipedon. Metz soils are stratified with strata finer than
loamy fine sand.
DRAINAGE AND PERMEABILITY: Somewhat excessively drained; slow runoff; rapid
permeability. Some areas subject to localized flooding and deposition. Channels and other flood
control measures now protect some areas.
USE AND VEGETATION: Used for range, dryland crops, urban development, and for growing
truck crops, alfalfa, citrus, and other fruits under irrigation. Uncultivated areas have a cover of annual
grasses, forbs, coyotebush, other shrubs, and a few live oak trees.
DISTRIBUTION AND EXTENT: Small coastal valleys from central California southward. The
soils are moderately extensive.
MLRA SOIL SURVEY REGIONAL OFFICE (MO) RESPONSIBLE: Davis, California
SERIES ESTABLISHED: Santa Cruz County (Pajaro Valley Area), California, 1908.
REMARKS: This description represents a change in the type location which was formerly in Santa
Cruz County. Corralitos was not mapped in Santa Cruz County during the soil survey completed in
1976. This does not change the concept of the series. Soils of the Laguna series are now dominantly
included in the Corralitos series. Continued study is needed to establish acceptable differentia
between the Corralitos and Arnold series. Arnold soils are underlain by soft sandstone at depths of 40
inches or more.
Last revised by the State on 11/77.
OLIVENHAIN SERIES
LOCATION: OLIVENHAIN, CA
Established Series
Rev. GK/LAB/LCL
6/73
The Olivenhain series is a member of the clayey-skeletal, kaolinitic, thermic family of Ultic
Palexeralfs. Typically, Olivenhain soils have brown and reddish brown, medium acid, very cobbly
loam A horizons, reddish brown and red, medium and strongly acid, very cobbly clay B2t horizons,
grading to pinkish white cobbly loam C horizons.
TAXONOMIC CLASS: Clayey-skeletal, kaolinitic, thermic Ultic Palexeralfs
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TYPICAL PEDON: Olivenhain very cobbly loam - native pasture. (Colors are for dry soil unless
otherwise noted.)
A11--0 to 6 inches; brown (7.5YR 4/4) very cobbly loam, dark reddish brown (5YR 3/4) moist; weak
medium and fine granular structure; soft, friable, nonsticky, nonplastic; common medium, many very
fine and fine roots; many fine and very fine interstitial, common fine tubular pores; 25 percent
cobblestones; medium acid (pH 5.7); abrupt wavy and irregular boundary. (4 to 8 inches thick)
A12--6 to 10 inches; reddish brown (5YR 4/4) very cobbly heavy loam, dark reddish brown (5YR
3/4) moist; weak and moderate medium subangular blocky structure; slightly hard, friable, slightly
sticky, slightly plastic; common very fine and fine, few medium roots; common fine interstitial and
tubular pores; 25 percent cobblestones; medium acid (pH 5.6); abrupt wavy and irregular boundary.
(4 to 6 inches thick)
B21t--10 to 19 inches; reddish brown (5YR 4/4 dry and moist) very cobbly clay; reddish brown
(2.5YR 4/4) mottles, dark reddish brown (2.5YR 3/4) moist; moderate medium subangular blocky
structure; very hard, firm, sticky, plastic; few medium fine and very fine roots; few very fine and fine
tubular pores; common moderately thick clay films lining pores and on faces of peds and pebbles; 40
percent cobblestones; medium acid (pH 5.6); clear wavy and irregular boundary. (6 to 11 inches
thick)
B22t--19 to 29 inches; red (2.5YR 5/6) very cobbly clay, red (2.5YR 4/6) moist; yellowish red and
reddish brown (5YR 5/6, 5/3) mottles, reddish brown and yellowish red (5YR 4/3, 4/6) moist; weak
and moderate coarse subangular and angular blocky structure; very hard, firm, sticky, plastic; few fine
and medium roots; few fine tubular pores; common thin and moderately thick clay films lining pores
and on faces of peds and on pebbles and cobbles; 40 percent cobblestones; strongly acid (pH 5.4);
clear wavy and irregular boundary. (7 to 12 inches thick)
B3--29 to 42 inches; pink (5YR 8/3) very cobbly clay loam, light reddish brown (5YR 6/3) moist;
pinkish white (7.5YR 8/2) mottles, pinkish gray (7.5YR 6/2) moist; massive; hard, friable, slightly
sticky, slightly plastic; few fine and medium roots; few thin and moderately thick clay films on
pebbles; 40 percent cobblestones; strongly acid (pH 5.3); clear wavy and irregular boundary. (8 to 18
inches thick)
C1--42 to 68 inches; pinkish white (7.5YR 8/2) cobbly loam, pinkish gray (7.5YR 6/2) moist;
massive; slightly hard, friable, slightly sticky, slightly plastic; few fine and medium roots; 25 percent
cobblestones; strongly acid (pH 5.1).
TYPE LOCATION: San Diego County, California; about 2 miles northwest of Poway;
approximately 2,450 feet east of Pomerado Road; SW1/4NE1/4 sec. 11, T.14S., R.2W.
RANGE IN CHARACTERISTICS: The mean annual soil temperature at 20 inches depth is 62
degrees to 64 degrees F. The soil between depths of 6 and 15 inches is usually moist in some part
from about December 1 until late May and is continuously dry the rest of the time. The A horizon is
yellowish brown, brown or reddish brown (10YR 5/4, 7.5YR 4/4, 5/4; 5YR 4/4). It is cobbly loam or
cobbly sandy loam and has less than 1 percent organic matter below a depth of 4 inches. This horizon
LSA ASSOCIATES, INC. GEOARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSESSMENT
ARIL 2017 SEWER GROUP 786 AND SEWER AND WATER GROUP 955
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
P:\RKE1601-MissionBayGeoArch\Repor t\Geoarch report\Revised_Grp786-955_geoarch_rpt_Apr2017_Final.docx (4/26/2017) A-9
is slightly or medium acid. The B2t horizon is brown to red (7.5YR 4/4; 5YR 3/4, 4/4, 5/3, 5/4, 5/6;
2.5YR 3/4, 4/4, 5/6). This horizon is very cobbly or very gravelly clay with 35 to 60 percent rock
fragments. The clay increase at the A-B horizon boundary is 15 to 25 percent (absolute). This horizon
is medium or strongly acid and has 60 to 75 percent base saturation. The C horizon is cobbly loam or
clay loam and is medium or strongly acid.
COMPETING SERIES: These are the Cometa, Corning, Guenoc, Keefers, Kimball, Placentia,
Positas, and Redding series. All of these soils except Keefers have less than 35 percent rock
fragments in the argillic horizons. Keefers soils lack an abrupt or clear A-B horizon boundary with as
much as 15 to 20 percent absolute difference in clay content. Also, Cometa, Corning, Positas, and
Kimball soils have a base saturation of more than 75 percent in the argillic horizon. Guenoc soils
have a lithic contact 20 to 40 inches below the surface. Placentia soils have more than 15 percent
exchangeable sodium in the argillic horizon. Redding soils have a duripan.
SETTING: Olivenhain soils are gently sloping to strongly sloping and are on dissected marine
terraces at elevations of 100 to 600 feet. The climate is dry subhumid mesothermal. Summers are
warm and dry and winters are cool and moist. Mean annual precipitation is 12 to 16 inches. Average
January temperature is 50 degrees F., average July temperature is 75 degrees F., and mean annual
temperature is 62 degrees F. The frost-free season is 290 to 330 days.
PRINCIPAL ASSOCIATED SOILS: These are the Antioch, Bosanko, Diablo, Linne, and Stockpen
soils. Antioch and Stockpen soils have natric horizons and lack rock fragments. Bosanko and Diablo